Skip to main content

BEACON Senior News - Western Colorado

Friendsgiving and solitary celebrations

Oct 28, 2019 03:01PM ● By Beacon Senior News

Make the most of Thanksgiving Day

The long-held tradition of the family gathered around a table for a savory Thanksgiving feast carries fond memories for most. Yet many will spend the day alone, either out of circumstance or by choice. Whatever the case, there are plenty of ways to enjoy the holiday without family. So whether you go it alone or decide to host a Friendsgiving feast, these tips will allow you to make the most of your holiday.

Solitary celebrations

The upside of spending Thanksgiving alone is that you can celebrate any way you choose. Be sure to plan ahead to make the most of your day. Or, simply sit back and relax while everyone else is running around making last-minute preparations like a turkey with its head cut off.

One of the benefits of spending the day alone is that you can feast on anything your heart desires. If you like cooking, it's the perfect day to pull out your favorite recipes and treat yourself to a gourmet meal. It doesn’t have to be turkey!

If cooking isn't your thing, you can still indulge by eating out. A few restaurants are open on Thanksgiving, and some will even serve a Thanksgiving dinner. Just make your reservation a week or so in advance because restaurants often book up early for the holiday.

One place that doesn't shut down on Thanksgiving is the movie theater. Catch up on the latest flick while treating yourself to hot buttery popcorn or your favorite movie snack.

Need to burn off those calories? The weather isn’t that cold yet! Take advantage of the late fall temperatures to get some fresh air, go for a bike ride or hike.


On the other hand, you can stay in where it's cozy and warm and bask in a home spa treatment. Give yourself a manicure, pedicure, facial or even try out a new hair color.

Thanksgiving is also an excellent day for a trip down memory lane. Pour a glass of wine, play some music from your past, and flip through photo albums or watch home videos.

Is there a book you've been dying to read? Curl up on the couch and spend the entire day relaxing and reading. It's also the perfect opportunity to call family or friends you haven't spoken to in a while. So give them a ring and catch up, especially if you know they’ll be spending the holiday alone, too.

Maybe you'd really like to do something good for the soul and for others. If so, offer to help at a soup kitchen. If you’re looking to purge closets, another option is to take up a coat collection. Then, on Thanksgiving day, deliver the coats to a homeless shelter.


friendsgiving potluck food

Even if you don't have family around for the holidays, you don't have to spend Thanksgiving alone. In fact, many people opt to spend the day with friends to avoid family drama or uncomfortable conversations (ahem, politics) that all too often erupt at family Thanksgiving gatherings.

Odds are you have friends, co-workers, neighbors, or acquaintances who will also be spending the day alone. So why not host a Friendsgiving feast? Even if you spend Thanksgiving day with family, Friendsgiving has gained so much popularity in recent years that many people hold a Friendsgiving dinner on Friday or Saturday so they can enjoy the company of their friends also.

There are a lot of ways to do your Friendsgiving, which might depend, in part, on the size of your guest list. If it's only a couple of you, split the grocery list, then plan to cook together that day. You could also skip the hassle and make reservations in advance for an enjoyable dinner out.

For celebrations with a bigger guest list, a potluck might be your best bet. Planning ahead will reduce the amount of work and stress on your part so that everyone can have a good time.

How to host a potluck Friendsgiving

  • As the host, offer to cook the turkey or meat dish yourself.
  • Ask each person to bring one or two specific side dishes such as veggies, mashed potatoes, snacks, desserts, or perhaps their favorite beer or wine.
  • You can also ask guests to bring ice, coolers, tableware, serving utensils, folding chairs, folding tables, and tablecloths.
  • Plan for some form of entertainment such as music, cards or games. If all your guests are football fans, you’re in luck!
  • Will friends be bringing kids? If so, have a clean childproof room available where they can play away from the adults.

However you choose to spend your day, the most important thing is to enjoy it and know you're in good company—whether it be the company of yourself, acquaintances, or friends.

Sign up for our Newsletter

* indicates required
I am a...