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Maine Stores Closed on Thanksgiving

Black Friday
Sandy Huffaker, Getty Images

Don’t be fooled by the commercials.

Thanksgiving will be ruined across the country by big box stores, but not here in Maine! Macy’s, Sears and Wal-Mart have been promoting fiercely that they will open on Thanksgiving to kick off the holiday shopping season. According to a poll we did here at I-95, only 12% of our listeners will shop on Thanksgiving. Because of state law, they will be shopping out of the 207.

Maine is only one of three states with what is known as Blue Laws, passed in 1963. It prohibits almost every retailer in the state to be open on Thanksgiving. Rhode Island and Massachusetts are the only other states that have similar laws.

There are a few establishments that are allowed to remain open. Movie theaters, restaurants, pharmacies, bowling alleys and convenience stores can remain open. Retail stores with less than five employees and are less than 5,000 square-feet also can open their doors on Turkey Day.

Maine however could break away from Blue Laws in 2015 or so. The Retail Association of Maine says they would support a law that gives municipalities and their voters the local option to open stores on Thanksgiving. As it wasn’t a priority, a vote will be held off for now.

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