REI closes on Black Friday, asking shoppers to #OptOut and go outdoors instead

Instead of shopping for deals inside, a group of local Chattanoogans decided to go hiking on Black Friday. (Image: WTVC)

The day after Thanksgiving is often associated with door buster deals.

But this Black Friday, some locals chose peace and quiet in the great outdoors.

Outdoor retail giant, REI, started the #OptOutside Campaign in 2015.

They close their stores on the biggest shopping day of the year, and encourage everyone to enjoy the outdoors.

While a lot of the nation heads indoors, scoping out Black Friday steals, state parks like Booker T. Washington in Chattanooga are urging people to get outside instead.

Rangers across the state are hosting guided hikes as part of an initiative called Opt Outside.

Charlie Remy says he'd much rather spend his time outdoors.

"I'd rather do things that are more experiential related instead of consuming things and buying things that I don't need," says Charlie.

Not to mention, Charlie says it's cheaper than holiday shopping.

"There's so many great places to hike and exercise and they're all free!" says Charlie.

Not only is hiking out here great for your health, park ranger Jordan Brison says it also gives you a chance to soak up nature's beauty.

"Today, instead of being stuck inside, in lines, dealing with lots of people, a great time to burn off all the turkey we ate yesterday, and spending time outdoors enjoying everything around us," says Bison.

If you're looking for a change of pace this holiday season, Charlie encourages you to Opt Outside.

"The combination of learning, being outdoors, the weather - yeah, it's really fun," says Charlie.

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