Happy Thanksgiving – How the Amish Celebrate It

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. You can also check out this full-length article on Amish Thanksgiving for more. 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 🙂

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    1. Leana A Mari

      Thank you

      The same to you! Thank you for all you do with this site.
      I am here at home with the only family I have, as I am every day. I am cooking the meal for me and my 90 year old mother.

      1. Thank you Leana! I hope it was a wonderful time with you mother

        1. Leana A Mari


          Yes, it was, thank you!
          I hope yours was good too.

          I have been interested in the Amish for many reasons.
          I live in Oregon and there are no Amish here but I wish there were. I joke with my mom that if we win the lottery, I will buy a homestead here and make it the first! I am a Christian and this world is getting so dark I don’t know how I can stand it much longer and I long for a refuge like that, at least for now. At least I can be a romantic dreamer, right?
          Till next time!

    2. Al in Ky

      Thanks for continuing all of interesting posts on Amish America. It’s amazing that after all of these years (16 years?), you continue to find new topics to write about, as well as keeping us posted about recent developments in Amish communities.

      1. Thanks Al, I think “the Amish” is a topic of such depth that I feel pretty confident that I’ll continue finding things to write about. But you’re right, I wouldn’t have predicted it 16 years ago

    3. Paula

      Thank YOU!!!

      I appreciate you. I’ve learned so much from your posts & the insight of the commenters. Have a great holiday season!!!