flashback

People form lines outside Belk-Hudson early in the morning the day after Thanksgiving 1994, awaiting the 7 a.m. opening and great savings. Many stores opened early to provide additional hours of shopping for those kicking off their holiday spending.

25 Years

(Nov. 25-30, 1994)

Local shoppers arose well before sunrise to hit their favorite stores for after-Thanksgiving sales, with some waiting outside for an hour or more for 6 a.m. openings.

The News reported, “Betty Davis, along with her daughters, Crystal Davis and Barbara Peacock, hit the door running this morning after getting up about 4:30 a.m. to drive to Brunswick from Folkston.

“‘It is easier to come here than Jacksonville,’ Peacock said, explaining the malls are safer and the bargains are just as great.

“’You have the same advantage and the same nice shops,’ she said.

“Peacock was looking to finish her Christmas shopping while her sister said she had not even started.”

The Brunswick High football team would not longer be shopping for a championship, though, falling 28-8 to Valdosta in the state playoffs, closing out the squad’s best season to date.

“The Pirates knew coming in that the man they would have to stop was Valdosta senior quarterback Kareem Wilson,” News Sports Editor Murray Poole wrote. “Well, on this particular night, the Wildcat field general proved all but unstoppable.”

The college bowl schedule mostly came together, with the one unknown being the winner of the SEC Championship between Alabama and Florida would head to the Sugar Bowl while the loser went to the Citrus Bowl. Waiting for them in the Sugar was Florida State, while Ohio State served as the Citrus opponent.

Elsewhere, it was Tennessee versus Virginia Tech in the Gator Bowl, N.C. State versus Mississippi State in the Peach Bowl and South Carolina versus West Virginia in the CarQuest Bowl.

50 Years

(Nov. 28, 1969)

Much like the Sunday sales prohibitions, no one really knew the law as it applied to alcohol sales around the holidays.

“A search by The News for a concrete answer to the problem left reporters as befuddled as officials seemed to be,” News reporter Joe McCarthy wrote. “It was reported that the county police had closed several taverns, particularly on St. Simons Island, shortly after midnight Thanksgiving Eve although many of these places had remained open, dispensing holiday cheer, until 2 a.m. in past years.

“Another question confronting a bemused public an sellers is the sale of beer only on Thanksgiving Day. And to further the situation into tipsy balance, certain regulations apply to the city and not the county and vice-versa.”

75 Years

(Nov. 24-25, 1944)

Glynn Academy put forth its best effort in a Thanksgiving football battle with South Carolina’s champion Camden, but came up short 21-12.

The News reported, “Coming here with the reputation of being one of the best high school teams South Carolina has produced in many years, local fans expected to see a runaway game, but, instead, they saw the Terrors play probably their best game of the season, matching the Bulldogs in many ways, and when the game was over the South Carolinians realized they had been in a gridiron battle.”

With regular season games still to play, the Orange Bowl selected Georgia Tech to face off against Tulsa. In other bowl games, the Rose Bowl picked Tennessee to play Southern Cal, and the Sugar Bowl would feature Alabama and Duke.

Meanwhile, The News’ editors opined:

“There may be a housing shortage, but there is always a place for rumors.”

“A girl may be timid and gentle, but she doesn’t mind ‘snapping up’ a man.”

“Girls are marrying stranger-soldiers so they can get better acquainted with them.”

“The housewife complained that the butcher sold her a ham that had been cured, but it relapsed.”

100 Years

(Nov. 25-26, 1919)

Local officials had just about enough of gambling and the unsavory characters games of chance attracted.

The News reported, “‘If Brunswick has any more carnivals all gambling features will be strictly prohibited.’ That, in substance, is the edict that has been proclaimed by the chairman of the Board of County Commission, Constanse Miller, and, be it said, Mr. Miller means just what he says.

“In discussing carnivals which drift this way with the autumnal gales, Mr. Miller expressed his unreserved disapproval of the manner in which they were conducted.

“’I am not opposed to good, clean shows, so-called carnivals,’ said he, ‘but I am strenuously opposed to these itinerant aggregations, who have nothing that smacks of a carnival except wheels of fortune and the like.’”

The next day, the Brunswick city government banned street carnivals altogether, as a way to combat traveling gambling operations.

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Brad Piazza formed the company Port City Partners with the belief that downtown Brunswick is in the midst of a renaissance, and he and his wife want to be part of it.