Thanksgiving greetings to one and all!
The best place to spend the Thanksgiving holiday, of course, is where your dearest friends and family are, wherever that might be. There's no better spot in the world to spend Thanksgiving than Provincetown, in these beautiful surroundings, with the bounty of nature all around us, and with the rich history of the Mayflower Pilgrims and the native tribes that first met near this spot in 1620.
Today in Provincetown a number of dinner tables will offer sauces, stuffings, chutneys, desserts and a variety of other dishes made with cranberries gathered from local bogs. Though cranberries weren't used this way at the first Thanksgiving, the early settlers here did learn from Wampanoag "Indians," as they were called, many ways to use cranberries as both food and medicine.
Today in many of our homes, besides watching Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and the obligatory annual football games, dating back to the 1930s, families will tell stories of forebears who sailed across the Atlantic in 1620, in search of religious freedom in an uncharted land. A number of local families can trace their roots back to ancestors who signed the Mayflower Compact before stepping off their ship Mayflower for the first time in the "New World," in the west end of Provincetown Harbor.
Crowds of Townies, along with friends and relatives from far-flung locations, gathered last night on High Pole Hill for the annual lighting ceremony at the Pilgrim Monument, which has become a tradition that kicks off the holiday season for families both living and visiting here. On clear nights, these lights can be seen from the shoreline of Boston from now until after New Year's Day.
If you find yourself here at the tip of the Cape without close friends and family nearby, you can still celebrate the occasion and have a traditional holiday dinner among an amiable group of new friends who will welcome you with open arms. A traditional Thanksgiving dinner, open and welcoming to the entire Outer Cape community, will be served today at 12:30 PM, at 10 Shank Painter Road in Provincetown. The United Methodist Church is the home of SKIP, the Soup Kitchen In Provincetown, putting on this wonderful community celebration. There's no charge, and absolutely everyone is invited.
The Governor Bradford Restaurant and Bar, at 312 Commercial Street, will also be serving a traditional Thanksgiving dinner of roast turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, vegetables and cranberry sauce for just $14.95. Again, all are welcome, and you're bound to find a festive atmosphere amongst friends old and new, with the football games on the TVs there as well.
Wherever you find yourself today, do take a moment to reflect on a thing or two, no matter how small, that you are grateful for. Though your life may be filled with obstacles, and even with serious hardships, it will be that much richer for each of these blessings you recognize, even the tiniest one. Actually, one of those things might just be the fact that Provincetown exists, as a place where everybody is genuinely welcome. Truly, there simply is no place else like this...
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