Thanksgiving in Washington, DC

November 6, 2012 by

Festivals & Events

Old Town Trolley

Old Town Trolley. Photo credit: Elvert Barnes via Flickr.

If you’re spending the Thanksgiving holidays in Washington D.C., you’re in luck—there are many wonderful activities to keep you occupied and that help harbor a family feel, whether with family members or without. Here are some good ideas to spend the time while in D.C. for Thanksgiving.

How about witnessing the pardoning of the Presidential Turkey? This tradition has gained some attention in recent years, but dates back to the Truman administration where the president was presented with an official turkey for the holiday feast. It wasn’t until 1989, however, that under President George H.W. Bush the turkey was officially pardoned for the first time and spared its gruesome fate. The tradition has gained momentum and now onlookers can see the official pardoning of the hallowed bird.

The Reston, VA community kicks off the Thanksgiving festivities with a full day celebration including a holiday parade. Consider heading down and watching the festivities to get in the holiday mood.

Then there is the Annual Thanksgiving Day Trot for Hunger. If burning off the calories instead of gaining them is more your sort of activity, consider joining the So Others May Eat (SOME) Turkey Trot. This charitable cause is a 5k that will raise money for homeless men, women, and children. A great way to meet some locals, do something good for mankind, and see a bit of the city while you’re at it. This kicks off at Freedom Plaza. Registration is available the day of, but it is recommended to book in advance for ease of congestion.

With the change of weather and the last of the leaves still clinging to the trees, consider Thanksgiving a great time to take the Old Town Trolley. This is a great way to explore the sites of DC, grab your bearings, and learn about the history of America’s capital. Everyone’s in a festive mood, so it makes the trolley ride seem that much more special.


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