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Wrentham's proposed 'Midnight Madness' ban could be big boon for Natick

Posted by Jaclyn Reiss  October 17, 2012 02:51 PM

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One town’s proposed ban could be another town’s potential gain this holiday season.

Natick leaders said they would welcome any Black Friday shoppers left out in the cold from the potential Wrentham ban of “Midnight Madness” at the premium outlets there.

“We’re known for our retail hub and economic development, so we have no problem welcoming shoppers,” said Paul Joseph, chairman of Natick’s Board of Selectmen.

Wrentham Planning Board members will meet tonight to debate whether to revoke the Wrentham Village Premium Outlets’ permission to open early on Black Friday, the major retail holiday following Thanksgiving that often features flash sales and “early bird” consumer deals.

Wrentham police worry about crowds, criminals, gang members and being a target for terrorism, according to a letter sent to the town’s Planning Board.

However, Natick Police said their patrol officers have never encountered problems on Black Friday that reach beyond the department’s control.

“Naturally, we have concerns during the holiday season that cause us to show more attention to the retail district due to a greater influx of individuals,” said Natick Police spokesman Lieutenant Brian Grassey.

Grassey said that the Natick Mall, which lies about 25 miles north of Wrentham's outlets, usually hires additional private security during the holiday rush.

“It’s been typically enough to handle the influx of traffic,” he said. “They’ve been a pretty big partner in that regard.”

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Jaclyn Reiss can be reached at jaclyn.reiss@globe.com

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