I'm always surprised when people aren't aware that Canadians celebrate Thanksgiving. No, they don't do the whole Pilgrim routine like we used to in the states -- their history is a bit different than ours. Thanksgiving Day in Canada (Jour de l'Action de grâce) has only been around since 1957. That's when the Canadian Parliament proclaimed:
"A Day of General Thanksgiving to Almighty God for the bountiful harvest with which Canada has been blessed – to be observed on the 2nd Monday in October."Since 1971, the holiday has coincided with our observance of Columbus Day. I've been north of the 49th Parallel twice for Canadian Thanksgiving. Once in Vancouver, and last year across Burrard Inlet on the North Shore. I'll be home for their holiday this weekend, thinking of my Canadian friends and counting the days (45) 'til our Thanksgiving on Thursday, November 23.
When Googling Canadian Thanksgiving, I discovered this funny video titled Crappy Canadian Thanksgiving, starring Canadian actress Ellen Page and Justin Long. Bon Appetit!
The 10K Granville Island Turkey Trot for runners/walkers is Monday, Oct. 10 in Vancouver. Photo by Sue Frause.
Actaully our Thanksgiving started further back than 1957. It perhaps wasn't an official holiday but was observed. From Wiki.
"The history of Thanksgiving in Canada can be traced back to the 1578 voyage of Martin Frobisher from England in search of the Northwest Passage. " and "Years later, French settlers, having crossed the ocean and arrived in Canada with explorer Samuel de Champlain, in 1604 onwards also held huge feasts of thanks. They even formed 'The Order of Good Cheer' and gladly shared their food with their First Nations neighbours."
As you pointed out it isn't about pilgrims. It's all about the bounty of the harvest and giving thanks for that and of course good people to share it with. It's also not as high in the hierarchy of holidays as it is in the states. No huge holiday crowds travelling, we save that for Christmas.
Good to know ... thanks for the info. I love Thanksgiving, whether celebrating it in Canada or the US. And I really like leftovers!
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