Thanksgiving Day in Philadelphia
- SWATHI RAMASWAMY
- UPDATED May 09, 2018
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Thanksgiving Day is a holiday celebrated in countries like the United States of America, Canada and Germany which is associated with offering a thankful prayer to the God for the good harvest of the year. The day always falls on the fourth Thursday of the month of November and is followed by Christmas. The tradition is associated with both Judaism and Christianity.
Thanksgiving is a festivity of joy and spirituality to remember God for all the good he has given. The day is celebrated with splendor in the American continent with parades and shopping sprees organised by the city administrations.
There are a lot of amusement activities and celebrations conducted in association with Thanksgiving Day and Christmas all over the United States of America. Philadelphia also mesmerizes its residents with splendid shows, parades and winter activities. Thanksgiving Day celebrations start from the mid of November and extend till New Year’s Day. Every year Philadelphia is decorated with eye pleasing light displays and Christmas trees. The Thanksgiving Day celebrations showcase the Thanksgiving Day parade which is the star attraction of the celebrations organised in the city. Other attractions one must never miss are Philadelphia Holiday market and Christmas village , Blue cross river Rink Fest, Rothman Institute ice rink and America’s garden rink maze, Macy’s Christmas lightshow, the Comcast holiday spectacular show, Longwood gardens show etc.
1. Thanks giving day parade
The Thanksgiving Day parade which is the central attraction of the celebrations conducted during the Thanksgiving celebrations brings the whole population of Philadelphia and tourists from all over the world to the Benjamin Franklin Pathway. The parade is of the best among the several parades taking place all over the country. The parade portrays a plethora of floats, and air balloons along the 2 km long Franklin pathway. One might witness a vibrant show of dancers, an extravagant display of floats and listen to the refreshing music of trumpets and clarinets. The parade is a colorful show of kites and floats of animated cartoon characters with Santa clause popping out of the masquerades. Every year, the parade witnesses performances of artists who are more than 1/10th of a million in number. It is showcased every evening starting from the second week of November till the New Year day except on the Thanksgiving Day and the New Year day. One can seat oneself near the Benjamin Franklin square or in the Logan circle to get a good view of the parade.
2. Holiday Festival and holiday lightshow
There is a holiday festival and lightshow at the Benjamin Franklin Square park everyday from the first week of November. There is a 12 feet kite that that is placed above the fountain at the centre of the square in memory of Benjamin Franklin’s kite and light experiment which is a sight of attraction for the tourists.
3. Christmas Village and Philadelphia Holiday Market
There are several activities and shopping centers held in the Benjamin Franklin square right at the heart of the city. One such is the Christmas village set in the Love Park area of the Square. This is a village of historical importance. The Christmas village is set and exhibited in German style and every year the Christ kind from Germany arrives in Philadelphia to inaugurate the shopping tents which sells German handicrafts products. The tents lighted with Hernnhut stars are a pleasing solace to the eyes. This village is a major hub for Christmas shopping. There is a Philadelphia Holiday Market along with the Christmas village which exclusively sells the handicrafts and cottage industry products of artisans in Philadelphia. These villages start operating from the mid of November to the first week of January.
4. The Rothman Institute Ice Rink
As winter sets in for Thanksgiving, Philadelphia gears up for its winter amusement activities. The ice rink at the Rothman institute of Orthopedics at Dilworth Park is opened to the public for ice skating during the time. Every year hundreds of people visit the rink to have fun in the amazing ice arena. Skating lessons and coaching classes are provided in the rink at the winter falls. This is one of the highly populated areas filled with the youth and kids during the festive season.
5. Americas Garden Capital Maze at Dilworth Park
America’s Garden Capital Maze is a public garden managed in association with Greater Philadelphia Gardens. This garden is lit and decorated with stars and lights during the thanks giving season. The garden is a popular gathering place for families as it provides picturesque backgrounds for amazing photographs and is a delight to one’s eyes .The garden exhibits a wide variety of floral and other plants arranged in fancy fashions. The garden provides. The garden is transformed into a wonderland during the festive season with Christmas lights and lanterns glittering through the greenery.
6. Comcast Holiday spectacular
The Comcast Holiday Spectacular is a street showcases a Led display show of the performances of dancers from the Pennsylvania Ballet group. This is a fifteen minute screening of joy and entertainment on The Comcast experience video wall. This is a crowd pulling show during the celebrations.
7. Longwood Gardens
Longwood Gardens is a plant conservatory and horticulture garden in Philadelphia which is well decorated with fluffy snow and golden lights during the thanksgiving weeks. There are a range of trees and plants in the conservatory which are lit from top to bottom in multicolored LED lightings .They offer a sight of visual extravagance for its visitors. The fountains and ponds are also decorated with eye pleasing lightings. A large number of families visit the garden to mesmerize their children with the beautiful view of the gardens.
8. Christmas Light Show at Macy’s
This show takes place in the Grand Court in the National Historic Landmark. The show involves a display of the fountain dancing according to the rhythm of the music. This spectacular show is one not to miss in the thanks giving celebrations in Philadelphia
9. Reading terminal Holiday Rail Road
The Reading Terminal Market is one of the oldest markets which brings together merchants from all over the world. This market exhibits a model of the reading terminal railroad with small replicas of train and mountain railways. This model portrays the history of the age-old market and the transportation system in place. This exhibition added with the winter decorations is a sightseeing spot for the visitors.
10. Blue Cross River Rink Winter fest
There is an Olympic size river rink situated at the banks of river Delaware faces towards the expanse of the river. There is a lot of ice skating and sledge skating activities organized in the rink during the thanks giving season. This place not only provides skating activities but provides its visitors a breathtaking view of the river with parallel sightings of the Franklin Bridge. Situated down the lane of the bridge, it is a popular destination of visitors. Alongside the rink there are well planned seating arrangements for the visitors with fire places .This area too is decorated with flags and kites waving for Thanksgiving. The riverside park also has eateries which serve its visitors with mouthwatering delicacies.
So, if one wishes to spend his/her Thanksgiving in USA, Philadelphia is one of the best cities to look for. The city has kept a jewel box of celebrations and places to visit during the season where one can have fun and enjoy in the activities. The city has interesting stuff undercover which may unravel during the thanksgiving season to increase the sparkle of the festivity.