Whether you’ll be having the traditional feast or not, there are other ways to mark the annual holiday. From turkey trots to TV specials to gratitude practices, we’ve rounded up five ways you can celebrate Thanksgiving in L.A.
Thanksgiving week sees a slew of fun runs, walks and kid races for some family-friendly ways to get outside. Some races hold costume contests and hand out pie. The annual Turkey Trot Los Angeles returns to Downtown L.A. on Nov. 25 with a half-mile or mile-long “Kids Widdle Wobble” for children ages 12 and under, in addition to their 5k and 10k race. For more family-friendly runs, walks and trots check out our roundup of our favorite turkey trots happening this month.
It’s not Thanksgiving without pie, but if you’re not exactly the baking type, then you need to plan ahead. Bakeries and restaurants around L.A. are taking orders now so you can be the Thanksgiving Day hero with dessert in hand. Italian, French and Argentinian inspired Bianca Restaurant in Culver City is offering delicious, thick crusted pies for pick-up on Nov. 23 or 24. Choose between apple pie, key lime pie, chocolate banana pie, pecan pie and pumpkin pie. Pies are $50 – $60. Pre-order is open now through Nov. 19.
Cozy up with a TV special
It’s that time of year where streaming and cable are full of seasonal TV movies and specials, like the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, the National Dog Show and “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving.” Parents who grew up with cartoonist Charles M. Schulz’s Peanuts comic strip and TV series will get to enjoy the timeless Charles Brown specials with their kids. The Emmy Award-winning holiday special airs on Sun. Nov. 21 at 7:30 p.m. ad-free on PBS SoCal. Watch Charlie Brown, Snoopy and the rest of the Peanuts characters create a Thanksgiving to remember. For more movie and show suggestions, check out our New on Screen roundup.
A popular Thanksgiving tradition is giving back to your community, like volunteering at an animal shelter, donating food to a local food bank or delivering a meal for someone in need. You can help bring the holiday spirit to local children in need by donating new, unwrapped toys to the Spark of Love Toy Drive Nov. 10, 17 and 24 at The Collection at RiverPark. Donate grocery items and non-food items like hand-sanitizer, paper towels and can openers to The Zimmerman’s Can Drive Cruise-In event on Nov. 20 benefiting the LA Food Bank. If you find yourself at the interactive drive-through event, Night of Lights OC, don’t forget to bring a new toy for kids ages 1-15 to donate to the Power of One Foundation’s Annual Toy Drive from Nov. 26 through Dec. 17. For more ways to give back in L.A., search “Benefits & Fundraisers” in our events calendar.
Honor the real story
When we think of Thanksgiving we often think of delicious food, family gatherings and giving back to the community. While these traditions are wonderful, it is also important to understand the true origins of this holiday. As adults, we may be aware of the myths around Thanksgiving that have been passed down from generation to generation. But how do we explain the full picture of the holiday to young kids? PBS KIDS offers families resources on tips for teaching gratitude and how to honor the real story of Thanksgiving with your kids. Their guides include tips on how to extend the lessons, like practicing gratitude year-round or making a point of learning about Native American traditions during other parts of the year.