Thanksgiving is celebrated in Canada, on second Monday of October every year. In past, this day was celebrated by the people of Canada to celebrate and thank for the good harvest.
But now Thanksgiving in Canada is celebrated as a get together with the family and friends who live far from their loved ones. They enjoy the night by eating good food and sharing happiness.
Most of the people think that Canadians Celebrate thanksgiving just because Americans do. But, the reality is different. The first thanksgiving was in the year 1578, which is 43 years before the American thanksgiving.
It was started by a British explorer, Martin Frobisher. He held a feast, which he shared with the people of his crew. Frobisher, went on a trip to Arctic which was said to be a very dangerous.
So, when he came back with his crew, though all the members of the crew did not come back as they last their lives on the way.
So, the people who came back joined Frobisher in the thanksgiving feast. He was very thankful that they came back alive. It is said that the food was made with whatever left outs they had on the ship, which was beef and mushy peas.
In the year 1606, a French Samuel De champlain, organized feast. There were people from France and Mi’kmag. Mi’kmag introduced the French with Cranberries.
At that time, an infectious disease was there, which spoiled the settlements which were being held at the Sainte Croix. As cranberries are full of Vitamin C, which can cure the disease (Scurvy).
It was an annual feast but done every week. Every week Champlains used to arrange a nutritious meal for the people.
In the year 1763, the war between France and the British ended. After seven years, the French handed over their people of Halifax to British. And this day was held as the day of thanksgiving. Till the end of war, thanksgiving days started to be held, but not every year.
Then people who came to Canada, after the American Revolution brought the customs of America to Canada. Such as, cooking turkey and pumpkin pie.
After the Canadian confederation, i.e. when the British colonies of the Province of Canada, Nova Scotia and NeuBrunswick were united on July 1, 1867.
In the year 1872, the confederation was celebrated on April 5, next day was celebrated as thanksgiving day. For celebrating the recovery of the prince of Wales. It was a civic holiday.
After 1879, it was held every year. But not on October. It was celebrated around Armistice Day in November. For some years it was celebrated in November but then the Parliament gave the annual date to this day.
Till the year 1931, thanksgiving and Armistice Day was celebrated on the same day. But, then again in the year 1957 on January 31st, the Parliament proclaimed the date as on second Monday of October every year.
Now, it is an official statutory holiday in all provinces and territories of Canada, except for Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia.
How do Canadian Celebrate Thanksgiving Day
In Canada, the celebration of Thanksgiving Day is not done as huge as America. But they do celebrate it, with a lot of joy. They arrange a huge family get together and parties.
As it is being celebrated on second Monday of the October every year. Canadians get a three day weekend, i.e. from Saturday to Monday. They celebrate this day to thank god for a good harvest.
It is stated as a religious fest about giving thanks for a beautiful harvest, which has evolved into a most important weekend on the Canadian calendar.
Canadians too love to cook turkeys on this day, Mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce are also served in front of the guests. They also arrange the parades on that day and also set football matches on this day.
Black Friday Celebration
Black Friday is celebrated on the day after thanksgiving. In US, it has a huge celebration. People do Christmas shopping on this day.
In earlier day, most of the Canadians use to fly to US for the celebrations of this day and doing the shopping as the retailers there used to create a huge attraction because of the sales or discounts they had to offer. So, people preferred buying things from there.
So, the Canadian retailers also decided to do so, they created their own Black Friday and started taking advantage of this day for the increase in their sales.