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The Christmas Creep Sneaks Up On The Holidays

Delta City
Christmas Light Parade & Christmas Program

The Uintah-Wasatch-Cache National Forest announced that permits for Christmas trees will be available Oct. 31 and Nov. 1. So... what happened to Halloween and Thanksgiving?

Kenneth Bartkus, a professor of marketing at the Huntsman School of Business said businesses typically don’t want to do things to upset their consumers, but no one seems to be complaining about the current trend.

“There have been some parodies in the past," Bartkus said. "If you go back, 1974 there was a Charlie Brown special where the characters go to a department store and they discover that it has Christmas displays already up in the middle of April. And there’s a sign there that warns them to get their shopping done because there is only 246 days left until Christmas. I think that type of parody resonates with the consuming public but I think they also look at it and they chuckle a little bit."

According to Bartkus, consumers are responding favorably to this phenomenon that retailers refer to as the “Christmas creep.” He added that consumers are not powerless.

“They can vote with their dollars," Bartkus said. "Just not shop at stores if they’re offended that they’re putting up displays too early, then you just don’t patronize those stores. But I don’t see that happening. It just seems to me that consumers may sound disgruntled or they may project their displeasure with it - but I don’t see any sense out there that they’re against it.”

Bartkus said that the last three months of the year is the strongest shopping quarter, primarily because of Christmas. That by starting Christmas earlier, they’re hoping to maximize their profits.