Top 5 Thanksgiving Television Traditions

BlogHer Original Post

The heightened emotions of the holidays call us to defend our traditions loud and proud. Is your family a canned-ridges cranberry family, or an organic-jellied-cranberries-with-orange-zest family? Oyster dressing, cornbread, or the Voldemort of stuffings (shhh giblet shhh)? To shop, or not to shop?

It matters, whether you find yourself spending the day alone, working or with new friends or with generations of family. We have our Thanksgiving convictions and habits, and they run deep.

Macy's Parade
lev radin /

Same with our Thanksgiving television traditions. If you are holiday screen-free, don't judge us. Whether inherited along with a sprinkling of freckles and Great Aunt Linda's green bean casserole recipe, or cultivated along the way, holiday TV traditions can be as important to the mood and celebration of the day as the pie options on the sideboard. (By which I mean pumpkin, because apple and sweet potato are just plain wrong on Thanksgiving, according to me. You do you, of course.)

NEXT:Thankgiving TV Tradition #1, Breakfast of Champions -->

 #1 Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade 

Parade programming airs live Thanksgiving morning on NBC and CBS, so you have your pick of stations depending on your love/hate/love-to-hate relationship with Matt Lauer. ABC is showing a parade in Philly, but I don't see how that can be a contender, unless your tradition is to surf between them all.

NEXT:Thanksgiving Tradition #2, Best Friends -->

#2 National Dog Show

Noon on NBC. 150 breeds of dogs and John O'Hurley, a national treasure. It's just not the holidays until O'Hurley reading "The Perfect Dog" causes me to weep into my dog's fur as we both drool over the turkey smells filling the house.

NEXT:Thanksgiving Tradition #3, Essential -->

#3 Football

It probably won't give them an edge, but apparently Detroit claims the title for starting the Thanksgiving football legacy. A hallowed Thanksgiving tradition. If this is your family's thing, you don't need anyone to tell you your 2103 lineup includes: Packers at Lions (12:30 p.m. ET on FOX), Raiders at Cowboys (4:30 p.m. ET on CBS) and Steelers at Ravens (8:30 p.m. ET on NBC)

NEXT:Thanksgiving Tradition #4, More Basters, More Better -->

#4 Cooking Shows 



A lot of people hold a new tradition of watching cooking shows while they are in the kitchen on Thanksgiving. Inspiration for the feast, maybe, or guidance right when it matters. If that's your jam (or cranberry sauce) The Food Network scheduled a Pioneer Woman marathon on Thanksgiving and Alton and company have you covered online.

NEXT:Thanksgiving Tradition #5, Good Grief -->

#5 Charlie Brown Thanksgiving 

 ABC is airing this 1973 movie on Thanksgiving evening right at pie o'clock. 40 years of Woodstock in a pilgrim hat, those poor depressed kids, moody jazz piano, and Peppermint Patty having a moment of development when she realizes she's a powertripper? Pass the whipped cream.

NEXT:More Thanksgiving Traditions -->

Your Favorite Tradition

There are plenty of other options. Lady Gaga will be signing with the Muppets and Elton John Thanksgiving night. Plenty of sitcom marathons are running, there's a new Glee episode scheduled, and Big Bang Theory is re-airing the fantastic "The Christmas Simulation." Lifetime and Hallmark channels have you covered if your tradition is to curl up to a tear-jerking holiday themed movie, or try Disney for Despicable Me if your family wants a kid-pleaser.

I've heard that some people even leave the house and go to the movies, but that's crazy talk, because the pie is at home. What's your Thanksgiving entertainment tradition?


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