That famous American holiday – Thanksgiving will soon be upon us. Celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November, this year’s festivities fall on November 22.
The origins of Thanksgiving can be traced back to 1621, to Plymouth Massachusetts when the Pilgrims along with the Wampanoag Indians held a feast to give thanks to the good harvest. It wasn’t until 1863 during the Civil War though, that President Abraham Lincoln declared a national Thanksgiving Day to be held each November.
A typical Thanksgiving menu is not too dissimilar to what we eat on Christmas day in here in the UK and includes turkey, stuffing, gravy and mashed potatoes. There are also a few sides dishes that you may not be used to though – sweet potato topped with grilled marshmallows and green bean casserole, as well as the obligatory cranberry sauce. In the south they may even have corn bread and corn on the cob with their Thanksgiving meals.
For dessert expect lots and lots of pies, including pumpkin pecan pie and apple topped with lots of whipped cream or served with ice cream.
A nice tradition which is still going strong today is to go around the table and say what you’re thankful for. Sometimes people write them on pieces of paper while others read them out.
One of the best places to celebrate Thanksgiving are New York, where each year they have the big Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade filled with colourful floats and people dressed up in costume. You could also go to Plymouth, Massachusetts where they have historical re-enactments
And if you really want to stick with tradition then the day after Thanksgiving will be just as important for you. This is Black Friday where people all over the country get up as early as 4am to catch the latest bargains in the Black Friday sales.