Blackout Wednesday

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Thanksgiving Eve
Observed byUnited States of America
2018 date21 November 2018
2019 date27 November 2019
2020 date25 November 2020

Blackout Wednesday (also known as Black Wednesday, Drinksgiving, Thanksgiving Eve, Wacky Wednesday, Whiskey Wednesday, or Awkward Wednesday, or Big Wednesday) is a pejorative term for the night before the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States. It is associated with binge drinking since very few people work on Thanksgiving, and most university students are home to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday with their families.[1] The name refers to "blacking out", memory loss due to excessive alcohol intoxication. In the south Chicago suburbs in particular, Blackout Wednesday is sometimes a more popular partying night than even New Year's Eve or Saint Patrick's Day.[1] In some cities, it is the top drunk driving night of the year.[2] Police departments increase patrols checking for drunk driving in many jurisdictions including in Indiana[3] and Minnesota.[4] MADD reports that the Thanksgiving holiday produces more people killed in drunk driving crashes than the Christmas holiday.[5]

The term has a search history on Google beginning in 2014.[6]


  1. ^ a b Spak, Kara (November 22, 2011). "Biggest night of the year". Sun Times. Archived from the original on December 28, 2011. Retrieved November 28, 2012.
  2. ^ Nelson, Emily (2011-11-22). "Before the Turkey, A Big Night of Drinking". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved November 28, 2012.
  3. ^ JENNIE RUNEVITCH, Police to increase patrols for "Blackout Wednesday" PUBLISHED: 11/23/2016
  4. ^ Tim Harlow, On 'Blackout Wednesday' law enforcement will be looking for blitzed drivers NOVEMBER 22, 2016
  5. ^ MADD MADD’s “Tie One On For Safety” Holiday Campaign Cautions Drivers as More Highway Deaths Caused by Drunk Driving 11/13/2012
  6. ^ Blackout Wednesday: Google Trends

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