7 Thanksgiving Traditions for Families

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7 Thanksgiving Traditions for Families

November 26, 2019
posted by Matt Young


Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. It is a time to give thanks, spend time with family, and enjoy lots of delicious food!  For my family and me, it is also an opportunity to celebrate the many traditions we have made over the years. 

One of our favorite (and most simple) traditions is to take a family walk after Thanksgiving dinner. It gives us a chance to get out and enjoy the brisk Chicago weather, take in the occasional backyard Turkey Bowl, and check out the Christmas decorations from some of our overly-ambitious neighbors. Chasing two kids around the block burns just enough calories that I don’t feel quite as guilty going in for that 2nd slice of pumpkin pie!


Family traditions are important to us here at Radio Flyer too, especially around the holidays. This time of year reminds us to be thankful for the people and things in our lives. Creating meaningful family traditions is a wonderful way to spend time with the ones you love. Here is a list of 7 Thanksgiving tradition ideas you can add to your family’s holiday.

  1. Start the day with a family fun run

Across the country, holiday races are a popular way to wake up on Thanksgiving morning and get ready for a day of eating with the family. You can invite the extended family as well – aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandparents too! Little ones and adults that would rather root the racers on can have a blast making signs and cheering from the sideline – don’t forget your folding wagon with bench mode to create the perfect cheering spot!

  1. Set the table with the kids

Let your little ones be a part of the Thanksgiving table set up. Give each child their own job so they feel a sense of ownership in the family’s Thanksgiving meal. Watch them beam with pride telling family members how they helped! Some of our favorite suggestions include placing napkins, decorating place cards, and creating a centerpiece.

  1. Sharing gratitude

Get into the Thanksgiving spirit by sharing gratitude with your loved ones. Your family can go around the table and share aloud. Alternatively, place a “tablecloth” of butcher paper on the table for guests to write what they’re thankful for – use red and orange crayons as a festive touch!

  1. Volunteer

Giving back to those in need is important year-round, and Thanksgiving can be a great time to get the whole family involved. Bringing your family to a shelter, soup kitchen, or food bank can be a great way to donate your time to those who don’t have as much, especially around the holiday season.

  1. Watch the Thanksgiving parade or a favorite movie

Sometimes an activity as simple as gathering around the TV for a family snuggle can be the perfect way to create lasting holiday traditions. Put all other screens away while you watch to make the experience extra special. This way, everyone will be focused on the same thing, boosting the sense of sharing and togetherness. In the morning, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade is the perfect show for kids and adults alike. What will your child’s favorite float be? Or, after dinner, a classic movie like A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving or Miracle on 34th Street may the perfect film to start your new tradition!

  1. Family game night

When Thanksgiving dinner is done and guests migrate towards the couch, break out the board games or a deck of cards. Are you a Clue or Monopoly family? If your little one is old enough, teach them how to play Go-Fish! If the weather cooperates, take the game outside and have your own family Turkey Bowl! No matter if you’re indoors or outside, there will be plenty of smiles and laughter.

  1. Pick out a Christmas Tree

What better way to kick off the holiday season than taking the family to pick out your Christmas tree right after Thanksgiving? Your Radio Flyer wagon can be the perfect companion to tow your tree to and from the car. Kids will love having a say in picking a tree from the lot and helping make sure it arrives in mint condition.


No matter if you have traditions that go back generations or if you will be starting new ones this year, the holidays are all about spending quality time with the ones we love. Happy Thanksgiving!