Thanksgiving in Canada

Thanksgiving in 2018 is Monday, October 8.

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
Posted by Lee:

I can be thankful without having to believe in a "god". One does not have to be thankful to any person or thing!

Posted by greg m:

Always assumed Canada had Thanksgiving earlier because the weather gets unpredictable later in October. Having the holiday earlier would assure the ability of people to travel to be with friends and family without worrying about snowstorms.

Posted by Jenny:

Iím thankful for everything I have including my health. I have a good job, family & friends to count on, live in a nice home and can afford to buy whatever we like to eat. Iím thankful for being able to travel to see extended family and enjoy vacation time. I worked very hard when I was younger, living on a tight budget...I know what it means to go without. We are very lucky to call Canada home and live in a peaceful society. Iím thankful for living a good life. This Thanksgiving I want to give back to those who donít have what I have, and give them

Posted by Sadie:

LogicalJim - I always thought that the difference in dates between Canada and the US was due to the timing of our harvests. Being farther north, Canada's harvest is earlier.

Posted by LogicalJim:

With so many Canadians having relatives or dear friends in the U.S.A. I have often wondered why this day has should be so far apart in each of our counties? Is there any reason for this difference? If so, I'd be happy to hear a logical explanation.

Posted by Akhlaq :

Thanksgiving a day selected to sit together exchange greetings bring something at your choice and serve by the persons whose house you gather. Enjoy relax make good wishes for others around you. A sign of love cooperation and affiliation. A good day became rememberence. We done.

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