Thanksgiving is a reflective holiday spent with family and friends to give thanks for the gifts of one’s life. Families celebrate with the conventional Turkey dinners, gathering around the dinner table and enjoying one another’s company on the fourth Thursday in November. For Thanksgiving we would like to provide 8 Fun Facts about the Holiday in celebration.
1. 90th annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade – Not only will this year mark the 90th anniversary of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, but an estimated 3.5 million people will line the streets of Manhattan to witness it live!
2. The first Thanksgiving was held in 1621 – 395 Years later we are celebrating in commemoration of that day when 50 Pilgrims and 90 Wampanoag Indians gathered to feast with one another.
3. Thanksgiving was made a national Holiday in 1863— President Abraham Lincoln was convinced by Sarah Joseph Hale who campaigned on behalf of the tradition for 17 years to make Thanksgiving a national Holiday. Hale wrote the song “Mary had a Little Lamb.”
4. Presidential Tradition: Pardoning the Turkey— Ever since President Truman began the tradition in 1947, the president each year pardons a turkey from being eaten during Thanksgiving. Last year, President Obama pardoned a turkey named Courage.
5. The Football Tradition started 96 years ago—In 1920 the NFL started the Thanksgiving classic games and the tradition has carried on until today. For decades there were only 2 football games but beginning ten years ago, a third game was added to the roster.
6. The heaviest Turkey ever recorded was 86 pounds!
7. Turkeys were not consumed at the First Thanksgiving – According to historians, it was likely that deer, ducks, lobsters, and fish were consumed at the feast.
8. Benjamin Franklin wanted Turkey to be the national bird—If Benjamin Franklin had it his way, the Turkey would have been the national bird instead of the bald eagle! Food for thought!