WASHINGTON - Droves of people are ditching Black Friday shopping and are instead opting for the outdoors. In fact, the hashtag #OptOutside is a trending topic thanks to REI, an outdoor recreation store.
#OptOutside wants to change Black Friday as we know it. Instead of shopping, the goal is to get as many people as possible outside - whether that is walking, running, hiking or just soaking the outdoors all in. The new trend is catching on.
"I boycott shopping on Black Friday because I feel like we are way too much of a consumer society and not protecting our planet, so I purposely don't shop on Black Friday and not often anyway," said one woman.
For the third year in a row, REI closed its stores on Black Friday and is instead paying employees to spend the day outdoors. They are also urging everyone to get outside and post pictures about their outdoors activities using #OptOutside.
The movement is an alternative to Black Friday shopping and it is one that many are embracing.
"I am a big fan of REI and I think it is terrific they are promoting going outside instead of being inside in a mall shopping in a frenzy," said another woman.
In all fairness, critics point out this campaign is a brilliant marketing strategy by REI to get more people to spend money on outdoors apparel. The company does remind consumers that its website is still open for business.