Thanksgiving 2011: Five Sports Reasons to Skip ‘Black Friday’ Other Than Football

Something that has become almost as big a part of Thanksgiving as turkey is the insane idea that’s somehow fun to get up extremely early Friday morning–or even stay out Thursday night–to get in line for a chance to grab a toaster for two bucks or a sweater for three.

OK, I admit it, there are better deals than that out there. But I’m not going to fight for a spot in line in the wee hours of an otherwise fine Friday to get them.

Here’s a look at five sports reasons–besides the obvious football–to skip “Black Friday”:

‘Discover NHL Thanksgiving Showdown’

Sponsored by Discover Card, the “Black Friday” game between the Boston Bruins and the Detroit Red Wings opens NBC’s hockey coverage for the season. It’s interesting that a credit card sponsors something that might keep you from going shopping, but hey, it’s their call. My only problem is, as a Vancouver Canucks fan, I don’t like either team. Should be fun to watch, just can’t root for anyone. The Canucks play Phoenix later in the evening, but that one’s not available on TV everywhere.

Get your ski and snowboard on

If you’re somewhere lucky enough to have a mountain open by Thanksgiving, by all means hit the slopes. If not, take the opportunity after Turkey Day to get your gear together, check your bindings, boots, clothing, and just generally get excited about what’s coming.

Play NBA 2K12

If you’re an NBA fan still bummed about the lockout that will still likely be going on, play what is supposed to be an awesome game. I haven’t tried it yet, but I know others who speak highly of it. It could be Pong and beat shopping on “Black Friday.”

Go for a bike ride

Take yourself out for a long mashed potato burning, yams destroying, cherry pie excising bike ride. If you don’t have a bike, go for a good run or even a walk. It’s a great way to put the right frame on the holiday weekend and your health.

Watch ‘Punkin Chunkin’

This one actually airs Thanksgiving evening, but DVR it and watch it Friday while the crazies are out shopping. The World Championship Punkin Chunkin event took place Nov. 4-6, but will be covered in a special simulcast event on Discovery and Science channels. Watch ‘em hurl!

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