Morning Buzz: 5 things to know for December 20

1. We love giving gifts or the idea of a holiday mean, but don't always look forward to the cost. That's where Meijer stepped in for shoppers this past weekend.

The company paid it forward to one lucky customer at each of its 242 stores in the Midwest.

Meijer presidents and CEO, Ricky Keyes, had the honor of telling one couple that everything in their shopping cart was covered.

Since 2014, the company has surprised more than 1,100 customers as part of the annual Very Merry Meijer event.

 

2. Do your part to welcome home service men and woman at the Gerald R. Ford International Airport. On Friday, everyone is invited to come out to welcome volunteers and Patriot Guard riders.

The annual Operation Handshake will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.

If you know when other military members are returning home, the airport asks you to contact the Patriot Guard so they can organize a welcome for them.

 

3. For the first time in history, National Returns Day is expected to happen before Christmas.

According to UPS, it's because shoppers got a jump on online shopping in the day leading up to Black Friday. Shoppers returned about one million packages per day leading up to Christmas.

The shipping company was expected to handle 1.5 million returns on December 19.

In the past, the busiest return day happened in January. In fact, the second busiest return date is expected to be January 3, 2019 with an estimated 1.3 million packages sent back.

UPS is expected to deliver about 800 million packages this holiday season.

 

4. Christmas is less than a week away, and the University of Michigan says there is something to blame for parents being unequipped to handle their duties during the holiday season: alcohol.

In a new study, the school found that 1 in 12 parents admitted they were too impaired to actually parent because of excessive drinking at holiday parties.

Many of them say they do not limit how much they drink at those events.

Officials recommend making plans ahead of time for child care, with supervision both during and after the celebrations, as well as making sure babysitters have a safe ride home.

 

5. Davenport University is adding competitive video gaming to it's athletic department.

Davenport will start fielding a team next fall, joining Siena Heights University, as the only two colleges in Michigan with a competitive program.

Nationwide, there are more than 100 schools that run an e-sports team.

Most of the competition centers around first-person shooters, online multiplayer battles, and real-time strategy games.

Davenport is in the process of hiring a head coach and renovation space in the student center.

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