Happy Thanksgiving to everyone out there. You know when I manage to pause and think for a bit, I usually find there is a lot to be thankful for. I found Gloria Yoder’s words in her previous column inspiring on that matter.

How do the Amish celebrate Thanksgiving? I’m reposting below the video I made last year on this occasion. Here are a few general points on how Amish celebrate Thanksgiving:

  • A day of rest
  • Most businesses closed (but it can vary)
  • Getting together with extended family
  • A big meal, like non-Amish people do (some meals described in the video)
  • Being on a Thursday in autumn, weddings may happen on Thanksgiving Day in some communities

And, you’ll find other variations and customs across Amish America.

In some communities, Amish might meet for worship on Thanksgiving. Some years back, Don Burke shared photos in this post from Thanksgiving Day in the Clark, Missouri community. In the photo below, you’ll see that church is taking place that day.

In some places, Amish children put on a Thanksgiving program with singing. I include a brief clip of that in the video (I’ve also embedded it below; the video is by Phil Sarlo, recorded in an Amish school in Holmes County, Ohio).

In other communities, they may do benefit dinners for various causes. Here’s a flyer for one of them:

I also mention a poem that my friend Myron in Holmes County shared with me several years ago – “I Am Thankful”. You can find a link to that poem here. Inspirational poems are popular with a lot of Amish people, and get shared around.

My thanks to all of you who’ve supported this site and contributed your insights and comments over the years! I hope your Thanksgiving Day is spent in the company of loved ones and lots of good food. I happen to be away from my family this Thanksgiving but will be spending it with some good friends. I am bringing two pies along, one pecan and one pumpkin, they are handling the other food 🙂

Video runtime: 8:11.

Amish-made cheese

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