Thanksgiving is already an old tradition. For most people, it is a time to give thanks and spend time with family. For some, it also means watching football.
That’s right. Thanksgiving is about the 3 Fs – Food, Football, and Family. It is not only celebrated in the US, but also in Canada, Liberia, Saint Lucia and more countries.
In the United States, the Thanksgiving holiday tradition is traced to celebrations in Massachusetts and Virginia in 1619. Back then the feasts used to be prompted by the end of a drought and a good harvest. Pilgrims emigrating from England carried the tradition of Days of Fasting and Days of Thanksgiving with them to New England.
We now know that not everyone liked the idea of Thanksgiving when it was first announced by President George Washington in 1789. Some citizens felt that state governors should have made such a declaration, while others felt it was too religious in nature.
Novelist and magazine editor Sarah Josepha Hale, who wrote the famous poem “Mary Had a Little Lamb”, is also known as the Mother of Thanksgiving, as she made a big effort to make Thanksgiving a national holiday.
Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade features huge balloon characters. However, between 1924 and 1926, live animals such as tigers, borrowed from the Central Park Zoo, roamed the streets of New York.
Poultry includes chickens, ducks and geese. But when we think of Thanksgiving it is turkey that first comes to mind. A lot is eaten on that day and a lot more goes into sandwiches but be careful when tossing out Thanksgiving scraps. The day after Thanksgiving is the busiest day of the year for plumbers, mainly called out due to clogged garbage disposals and drains.
Cranberries and Pumpkin
Since cranberries are tart and it is improbable that the pilgrims brought sugar over on the Mayflower, they most likely were not included in the first Thanksgiving celebrations.
Pumpkin pie was originally introduced to the Thanksgiving dinner table by Pilgrims in 1623, and is still people’s second favourite. Apple pie is now rated as the number one choice, according to surveys.
Football is one of the many traditions associated with Thanksgiving Day in the US and Canada. The first Thanksgiving Day football game was played in Philadelphia in 1869.
The Detroit Lions began playing on the day in an attempt to get more fans in the stands. They played the Chicago Bears on Thanksgiving Day 1934 in the first game broadcast nationally and the Lions have played on the day every year since. The NFL has since expanded the original game to three games during the afternoon and evening and millions watch them on TV.
Virtually every level of football, from amateur and high school to college and the NFL, plays football on Thanksgiving Day or the immediately following weekend.
Happy English learning!!