There are many holidays around the world similar to Thanksgiving here in America, where people give thanks and celebrate what they are thankful for in life. Whether it is being thankful for good health, having food and shelter, or amazing friends and family, it is always nice to give thanks for the good things in life, no matter how big or how small. Check out ways that people around the world celebrate their own form of “Thanksgiving.”
Thanksgiving in Canada
Thanksgiving is celebrated on the second Monday in October. On this day, Canadians celebrate the harvest and all of their blessings over the past year. Families come together and feast on a turkey dinner, similar to the tradition we have here in the United States. Also as in the U.S., Thanksgiving gifts for the hosts in Canada include desserts, gift baskets, and flowers.
Moon Festival: Giving Thanks in China
The Mid-Autumn Festival in China, also known as the Moon Festival, is celebrated on the 15th day of the 8th lunar month of the Chinese calendar. It is a Chinese belief that the moon is the brightest and roundest on this day. During this festival, family and friends gather together to express their feelings about each other and offer sacrifice to the moon. The traditional Chinese dessert for the Moon Festival is moon cake, similar to the pumpkin pie tradition in the United States!
Chuseok: Giving Thanks in Korea
Chuseok is a day of giving thanks in Korea. It is celebrated in late September and early October. On this holiday, families come together to feast, share stories, and pay respects to their ancestors. The celebration also consists of dancing and dressing in traditional Korean costumes.
Dia de Acao de Gracas: Thanksgiving in Brazil
Brazil also has its own Thanksgiving, known as Dia de Acao de Gracas (the day of thanks). Dia de Acao de Gracas is celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November. It is a day to express gratitude and appreciation to God for all of God’s blessings, and the plentiful harvest throughout the year. Just like the United States, Brazil also has a big turkey dinner. Brazil is unique for its colorful “Thanksgiving” complete with fun and exciting Dia de Acao de Gracas carnivals!
Erntedankfest: Giving Thanks in Germany
The German harvest festival known as Erntedankfest is celebrated in September or October. The day is filled with lots of music, dancing, parades and sometimes even fireworks. Instead of a turkey, Germans feast on chicken and plenty of fruits and vegetables from the harvest.
Vaisakhi: Giving Thanks in India
In India, farmers celebrate a harvest festival known as Vaisakhi (also known as Baisakhi). This celebration is practiced in the states of Punjab and Haryana. Vaisakhi usually falls in the middle of April. The people, especially farmers, thank God for their harvest and prosperity,and pray for another year of success. People celebrate by praying at the gurdwara (temple), having family gatherings, and by having the big “melas” (carnivals).
Sukkot in Israel
The Jewish holiday of Sukkot (English translation: booths or huts) is one of the most important holidays in the Jewish calendar. It is also known as a harvest holiday, where farmers give thanks to G-d for the harvest. The holiday is celebrated five days after Yom Kippur, on the fifteenth of Tishrei, and lasts for seven days. During the seven days of this agricultural festival, observers live in a “sukkah” to give thanks.