Canadian Thanksgiving 2012
Thanksgiving Day is mainly celebrated in Canada and United States. In Canada where the temperature become colder sooner and the harvest comes before that of the United States the celebrations are held on the second Monday of October, whereas in the United States Thanksgiving is celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November.
Historically this holiday had its roots in religious cultural traditions as prayers of thanks and their corresponding ceremonies are the norm among many religions after the harvest. Today, however, it is primarily celebrated as a secular holiday. It is considered a statutory holiday in all provinces except for New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. Despite their businesses being open, many Maritime citizens join in on the celebrations regardless.
Here’s an account of brief History of Thanksgiving from Wikipedia:
“The origin of the first Thanksgiving in Canada goes back to the explorer Martin Frobisher who had been trying to find a northern passage to the Pacific Ocean. Frobisher’s Thanksgiving celebration was not for harvest but was in thanks for surviving the long journey from England through the perils of storms and icebergs. In 1578, on his third and final voyage to these regions, Frobisher held a formal ceremony in Frobisher Bay in Baffin Island (present-day Nunavut) to give thanks to God and in a service ministered by the preacher Robert Wolfall they celebrated Communion — the first-ever service in these regions. Years later, the tradition of a feast would continue as more settlers began to arrive in the Canadian colonies.
The origins of Canadian Thanksgiving can also be traced to the French settlers who came to New France with explorer Samuel de Champlain in the early 17th century, who also took to celebrating their successful harvests. The French settlers in the area typically had feasts at the end of the harvest season and continued throughout the winter season, even sharing their food with the indigenous peoples of the area. Champlain had also proposed for the creation of the Order of Good Cheer in 1606.
As many more settlers arrived in Canada, more celebrations of good harvest became common. New immigrants into the country, such as the Irish, Scottish and Germans, would also add their own traditions to the harvest celebrations. Most of the U.S. aspects of Thanksgiving (such as the turkey or what were called Guinea fowls originating from Madagascar), were incorporated when United Empire Loyalist began to flee from the United States during the American Revolution and settled in Canada.”
Happy Thanksgiving everyone.