It’s Thanksgiving, are you prepared? No? It’s too early? Not if you live in Canada.

Unlike Americans who celebrate the occasion in the fourth Thursday of November, Canadians celebrate almost two months ahead — every second Monday of October of each year. This 2019, Canadian Thanksgiving is on Monday, October 14.

How is Canadian Thanksgiving different from its US counterpart?

Here are some ways Canadian Thanksgiving differs from how their neighbours from the US celebrate it:

  • Canadians only get the Monday of thanksgiving off, unlike the US where both Friday and Monday are days off.
  • Canadian Thanksgiving is less sports-centric than the US one.
  • There are no Black Friday sales during Thanksgiving season in Canada. However, Canadian stores started offering huge deals to compete with US stores during the latter’s Black Friday.
  • While there’s also turkey and pie, some Canadians also serve ham and tourtiere (a pastry pie filled with potatoes) during Thanksgiving. Marshmallow, sweet potatoes, and cornbread are some of the food items you will find in a Canadian Thanksgiving table.
  • Thanksgiving dinner may happen on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday — it doesn’t have to be the Thanksgiving Day itself as what Americans usually do.
  • In the US, Thanksgiving seems to be more important than Christmas for most people. In Canada, it’s more of the opposite.

Why is Thanksgiving celebrated in Canada? 

When Thanksgiving was first officially sanctioned by the government in 1879, it was for religious reasons. It became a time to thank God for their harvest.

Even before the official government declaration, Thanksgiving was celebrated by Canadians to be thankful for their bountiful harvest for the past season.

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Today, Thanksgiving in Canada has become a time to bond with their families and to eat dinner. While the reason for commemoration has changed over time, the spirit of gratitude remains on the occasion.

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