Thanksgiving, an international, national holiday celebrated worldwide, brings families and friends together to exchange food and Thanksgiving. While Americans might equate Thanksgiving exclusively with American traditions and celebrations, Canada celebrates a similar holiday with solid historical roots commemorating Thanksgiving. This blog post will discover the fascinating history and captivating details of Canadian Thanksgiving, the fascinating origins, customs, and differences compared to American Thanksgiving celebrations.
Canadian Thanksgiving first took place in 1578 when English explorer Martin Frobisher held a formal celebration to thank his crew’s safe arrival at Newfoundland from Europe. This proper commemoration, known as Frobisher Commemoration, occurred throughout the year on different dates throughout Canada until 1879, when Thanksgiving officially became an annual national holiday and officially fixed as being observed annually on the second Monday in October as Thanksgiving for harvest season success.
Though Thanksgiving is celebrated in the U.S. and Canada, each country’s traditions vary significantly. One striking difference is how Canadian Thanksgiving does not tie directly into events or histories such as those held by its American counterpart; Americans typically mark this holiday by remembering when the Pilgrims arrived in 1620, while its Canadian equivalent has no such historical ties or traditions associated with its celebration; additionally, it falls on an entirely separate date and celebrates a different set of practices than what might be observed by its American counterpart.
Canadian and American Thanksgiving celebrations differ considerably by way of Black Friday; Canadians don’t celebrate it as Americans do – in Canada, the day after Thanksgiving is considered a working day; schools and businesses remain open, whereas many Canadians use this day off as part of an extended weekend vacation.
Canadian Thanksgiving menu is similar to its American counterpart in terms of food, typically featuring roast turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing, cranberry sauce, and pumpkin pie as main courses. Canadians sometimes also celebrate this day by serving regional foods such as tourtiere (meat pie) in Quebec or butter tarts from Ontario as dessert – traditionally enjoyed with friends or family during this delicious Thanksgiving feast!
Canadian Thanksgiving does not boast any nationally-known parade events like New York City’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade; however, multiple smaller parades occur throughout Canada each Thanksgiving, such as the Vancouver Thanksgiving Parade and Kitchener-Waterloo Oktoberfest Thanksgiving Day Parades.
Canadian Thanksgiving encapsulates its own distinct society’s rich social and cultural background. This celebration holds deep ties within Canada’s rich past and serves as an opportunity to give thanks, reflect upon life’s many gifts, and gather around a shared meal with family and friends. While not celebrated to the same extent as its American counterpart, Canadian Thanksgiving offers a festive occasion that honors and highlights Canada’s place within the North American community.