5 Things You Didn’t Know About Thanksgiving

By Gary McIntyre

Family and friends… that first bite of piping-hot turkey… the smell of pumpkin pie.

There’s so much to love about Thanksgiving.

But there’s plenty about this holiday that most Americans don’t know. Here are five of my favorite Thanksgiving facts.

They’ll make you the smartest and most interesting guy or gal at the table today!

#5 All of Those Thanksgiving Paintings are DEAD WRONG

We’ve all seen the paintings and drawings of that 1621 Thanksgiving feast between the Pilgrims and the Wampanoag Indians. And there’s always a big, fat turkey in the middle of the table.

But there was no turkey served at that first Thanksgiving. In fact, historians believe that the Pilgrims and Wampanoag were probably eating deer.

#4 Those Leftovers Are a Cherished Tradition

Like to chew on that leftover turkey and pie for a few days after Thanksgiving? Don’t feel bad – you’re participating in a time-honored tradition!

Thanksgiving was originally a three-day celebration. Talk about fattening up for winter!

#3 It’s a VERY Bad Day to Be a Turkey

Roughly 46 million turkeys are cooked in America each year for Thanksgiving. Let’s put that into some perspective…

The entire population of Canada is 36 million. And Sweden is about 10 million.

So Americans are cooking enough turkeys to give every man, woman and child in Canada and Sweden COMBINED their own bird.

#2 The Father of Our Country is the Father of Thanksgiving

While Thanksgiving was celebrated unofficially for a century and a half, it was President George Washington who really put it on the national calendar.

His first presidential proclamation in 1789 declared Thanksgiving a holiday… and immediately touched off a debate about whether Washington had the right to demand states celebrate.

#1 The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade Once Looked VERY Different

The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has become a cherished annual tradition. And while the first parade was held in 1924, the trademark balloons and floats didn’t appear until three years later.

But the original parades did include costumes and animals borrowed from the Central Park Zoo.