Children younger than 16 who are not with an adult 21 or older will not be allowed at the Mall of America on Thanksgiving Night or Black Friday, news sources report.
On the biggest shopping days of the year, the mall has decided to put its parental-escort policy in effect, mall spokeswoman Bridget Jewell said on Saturday, Nov. 17. The same rules will be in effect during the entire week between Christmas and New Year's, the Star Tribune reported.
The parental-escort policy is normally only in effect on Friday and Saturday evenings. After last year's chair-throwing incident on Dec. 27, though, the mall is trying to avoid a repeat, the Pioneer Press reported.
A crowd of more than 200 young people engaged in the chaos of last year, which was captured on smartphones and posted online. At least 10 juveniles and young adults were arrested, the Star Tribune reported.
"Last year we experienced a large influx of youth, more than we had anticipated." Jewell said. "We don't want it to turn into a place for people to come and hang out," Jewell said, as the Pioneer Press reported.
Last year, a record 219,000 people shopped at the Mall of America on Black Friday, which Jewell said was unprecedented, the Pioneer Press reported.
Many stores opened at midnight on Black Friday last year. Even more stores are planning to do the same this year -- at least 180. Every store at the Mall of America will be open by 6 a.m. Friday, Star Tribune reported.