Thursday, 22 November 2012


Thanksgiving Day  in the United States falls on the fourth Thursday of November.
Almost every culture in the world has held celebrations of thanks for an abundant harvest. The American Thanksgiving holiday began as a feast of thanksgiving in the early days of the American colonies almost four hundred years ago.

The first Thanksgiving  was celebrated in 1621 by the Pilgrim Fathers, the founders of America, to thank God for their first good harvest. They celebrated it with the native Indians, who had helped them  survive and taught them how to plant their crops. That first  feast lasted three days.
In the second half of the 1600s, thanksgivings after the harvest became more common and started to become annual events. However, it was celebrated on different days in different communities and in some places there were more than one thanksgiving each year. George Washington, the first president of the United States, proclaimed the first national Thanksgiving Day in 1789.
Then in 1863, at the end of a long and bloody civil war, President Abraham Lincoln asked all Americans to set aside the last Thursday in November as a day of thanksgiving.

Today the Americans celebrate Thanksgiving  on the fourth Thursday  of November, a different date every year. 
There is no school and most government offices and  businesses close for four days.  Thanksgiving Day is  traditionally a day for families and friends to get together for a special meal. 

The meal includes a roast turkey, stuffing, potatoes, cranberry sauce, gravy, pumpkin pie, and vegetables.  It is a time for many people to give thanks for the many blessings that they have.  

Thanksgiving Day parades are held in some cities and towns on or around Thanksgiving Day. Some parades also mark the opening of the Christmas shopping season. 

New York celebrates  with  the famous Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, starting at 9 am at the Museum of Natural History  near Central Park: more than two million people join this wonderful parade every year.

Now let's watch a short educational video that explains how Thanksgiving became a national holiday in the United States.

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