November 23, 2023

By Linda Cicoira

The average American cook takes nearly 10 hours to prepare a typical Thanksgiving meal of turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, corn pudding, macaroni and cheese, green beans, yams, cranberry sauce, and yeast rolls. Some might add a spiral ham and turnip greens to the mix.

But the actual eating, no not time spent on devouring pies and other desserts, takes a little more than 15 minutes. Of course, that’s only for the first helping.

The National Turkey Federation estimates that between 45 and 46 million turkeys will be eaten in the United States this Thursday. The average person will eat 15 pounds of turkey in 2023.

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The feast will amount to about 4,500 calories and will include the 50 million pumpkin pies that will be ingested. Last year, the average Thanksgiving dinner cost about $64. Figures have not yet been compiled by the American Farm Bureau Federation for this year’s spread.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, seven U.S. places bear the name “Turkey.” They are Turkey City, in Texas; Turkey Creek, in Arizona; Turkey Creek, in Arkansas; Turkey Creek, in Kansas; Turkey Creek, in Louisiana; Turkey, in North Carolina; and Turkey Valley, in South Dakota.

I think the bureau forgot about the path from Bloxom to Mappsville. It’s called Turkey Run Road! And there is another street with the same name on the other side of Virginia, in Star Tannery.

Turkeys can also predict the weather. Snow will come if they perch on trees and refuse to get down! If you see that a chicken or turkey’s feathers are very thick at Thanksgiving time, expect a hard winter. If the first snow sticks to the trees, there will be a bountiful harvest in the coming year. Ice in November, which will bear a duck, means the winter will be filled with sleet and muck.

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The Census Bureau also listed which states raised the most turkeys in 2022. Their answer, in order, was Minnesota, North Carolina, Arkansas, Indiana, Missouri, and Virginia.

It was reported that five places in the United States are named Cranberry. About 440 cranberries are in a pound and farmers harvest about 40,000 acres of cranberries in the U.S. with the largest number coming from Wisconsin. About 3.5 million people will attend the 99th annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade this year, where approximately 300 pounds of glitter will be sprinkled on the streets of New York City.

If all that isn’t enough, Marilyn Monroe, Meryl Streep, Matt Damon, and Taylor Swift all have a little bit of Thanksgiving in common.  According to the New England Historic Genealogical Society, they are all descendants of passengers or crew on the famous ship, the Mayflower.

And as always, your friendly annual PSA that the first Thanksgiving was held in Virginia in 1619, two years before the Pilgrims landed in Plymouth Rock.

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