Black Friday sales kick off the holiday shopping season, but expect to pay more
The second Black Friday of the pandemic is officially underway. After weeks of early sales, Friday marks the official shopping holiday that Americans expect to bring great deals. Stores opened early - Walmart, Best Buy, Old Navy, Dick's Sporting Goods, JCPenney and Kohl's - were first at 5 a.m. Bed Bath & Beyond, Macy's, Home Depot and Lowe's were opening an hour later. Target, GameStop and HomeGoods are among the retailers opening at 7 a.m. Hours can vary by location.Some stores will continue sales throughout the weekend ahead of Cyber Monday. Shoppers are expected to pay on average between 5% to 17% more for toys, clothing, appliances, TVs and others purchases on Black Friday this year compared with last year, according to Aurelien Duthoit of Allianz Research. TVs will see the highest price spikes. Such frustrations could mute sales for the holiday season that are supposed to break records.
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Actions to be taken after South African scientists detect new COVID variant
A new coronavirus variant has been detected in South Africa that scientists say is a concern because of its high number of mutations and rapid spread among young people in Gauteng, the country's most populous province, Health Minister Joe Phaahla announced Thursday. "Over the last four or five days, there has been more of an exponential rise (in new infections), Phaahla said at an online press briefing. Currently identified as B.1.1.529, the new variant has also been found in Botswana and Hong Kong in travelers from South Africa, Phaahla added. The World Health Organization's technical working group is to meet Friday to assess the new variant and may decide whether or not to give it a name from the Greek alphabet. European nations were moving to stop air travel from southern Africa on Friday. The British government announced that it was banning flights from South Africa and five other southern African countries effective at noon.
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Bidens expected to attend tree lighting ceremony on Nantucket
President Joe Biden on Thursday wished Americans a happy Thanksgiving, the second celebrated in the shadow of the coronavirus pandemic, in remarks welcoming the resumption of holiday traditions by millions of U.S. families - including his own in Nantucket, Massachusetts. The president and first lady Jill Biden visited the Coast Guard station at Brant Point to meet with personnel there and virtually with U.S. service members around the world. The Bidens also called in to the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, briefly bantering on air with NBC's Al Roker. Biden also joined the millions of Americans who celebrated the holiday with big groups of loved ones as his entire family flew up with him Tuesday night on Air Force One. The first lady was heard telling the Coast Guard members she would see them again Friday night at Nantucket's annual Christmas tree lighting, another Biden tradition.
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Eyeing that leftover turkey and other fixings? Here's how long it's good for.
The holidays are known for quality time with family, traditional recipes and the not so fun food poisoning outbreaks if you don't refrigerate your leftovers quickly. And once the leftovers are put away in the refrigerator, you have only a few days to eat them before they become a safety risk. If stored in a refrigerator, leftovers can stay good for three to four days. If they're stored in a freezer, it's three to four months. It's best to label the food with an expiration date when you put it away, to help you keep track of when it's no longer safe to eat, food scientist Lisa Yakas recommends.
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Golf rivals DeChambeau, Koepka to face off in the latest edition of 'The Match'
The fifth edition of "Capital One's The Match" will feature rivals Brooks Koepka and Bryson DeChambeau facing off in a head-to-head, 12-hole match at the Wynn Golf Club in Las Vegas on Friday (4 p.m. ET, TNT and TBS). One key question going into the event is: Do they or don't they despise each other? The two golfers have taken potshots at each other for months, and the back and forth became so silly at one point that PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan actually said fans could get kicked out of tour events for adding to the vitriol by saying the wrong thing to the wrong player. The bad feelings melted away between the two, we are told, during the Ryder Cup, when the golfers actually offered to play together for the good of the United States team. The two even shared a short hug after the U.S. defeated Europe. But the pair seem to have resumed their trolling of each other in recent weeks.
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Contributing: The Associated Press
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Black Friday sales, new COVID variant: 5 things to know Friday