Thanksgiving in Canada

Thanksgiving in 2016 is Monday, October 10.

Thanksgiving in Canada is celebrated on the second Monday of October each year and it's an official statutory holiday - except in PEI, Newfoundland, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia - however federally regulated institutions do observe Thanksgiving in those provinces too. In the US thanksgiving is the fourth Thursday in November.

The original idea is to give thanks for the past harvest season but for many Canadian families the tradition has changed over time and the focus is now to get together with family and eat a large turkey dinner. Apple cider is a must for any traditional thanksgiving celebration as well as turkey stuffing and pumpkin pie.

The first Thanksgiving holiday was held in Canada in 1872 to celebrate the recovery of the Prince of Wales from a serious illness. After 1879 celebrations were held every year but not always in October - it used to be observed around Armistice Day in November.

At the Crawford Lake conservation area (Milton, ON) a path around the lake has pictures and short stories of native people and their celebrations. One of the stories is about thanksgiving; it starts with this sentence:

"Thanksgiving to native indians was a way of everyday life rather than a one-day celebration."

Take a few minutes to think about this quote. Thank you.

Back to the list of Canadian statutory holidays.

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What are your plans for the thanksgiving long weekend? What did you do last year? What are you favourite activities in October? Do you have any comments or ideas related to thanksgiving in Canada?

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Recent comments
Anonymous:

turkey makes me sleepy

Anonymous:

I've heard it said many times that the Thanks Giving holiday originated from the day the white man won the war with Native American's and took ownership of all of their land. We are giving thanks for yet another war of our governments objective of committing legal murder and stealing land. This holiday is no different than Remembrance Day. I am not saying we should not give thanks to those who died thinking they were fighting for their country. They we lied to. United States' objective in every war was and still is OWO...to steal land and take over the world.

Anonymous:

On this thanksgiving day I give thanks to my children, my wife, my dogs, my parents, friends and work buddies.

Posted by Santaram Pandhoo:

I really love the Idea of a Thanksgiving Day.Its natural to be grateful in Life but Who did the Canadians thank on the Original idea who do they think nowadays and to whom should we be giving thanks. My natural answer if course we should be giving thanks to the One who allowed all these harvest.It would be God or people who have helped us. Is this what is being done? I hope and pray so. Happy Thanksgiving Day.

Anonymous:

Please consider saving a turkey next year. You can buy a few beers instead.? Rather have my kids eat a Turkey rather than them turning into Alcoholics.

Posted by Libby:

Every year we go around the table and everyone gets to share something that they are thankful for ...my mom started this tradition when people started to focus too much on eating and partying, and making non family plans for thanksgiving.. this is the real meaning of thanksgiving... and the little kids get to go first.

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