Holidays 17 of the Strangest Thanksgiving Traditions Ever  

Jacob Shelton
876 votes 203 voters 14.5k views 17 items

If you live in America, your family probably has some sort of Thanksgiving tradition. Maybe you and your mom watch the big game while your dad obsesses over the turkey, or maybe you and your siblings pitch in to make an epic dessert. But not all Thanksgiving traditions happen in the USA. In America, most people make a turkey with stuffing and the works, but in some countries Thanksgiving is celebrated in a cemetery, or by playing drums to a yam. Weird Thanksgiving traditions can take a lot of forms; from dressing up like homeless people and asking for candy, to eating crab instead of turkey. After all it’s not how you celebrate Thanksgiving, it’s who you celebrate it with that counts. We've put together a list of the weirdest Thanksgiving traditions that are bizarre, strange, or downright unheard of. 

One of the most obvious things about old Thanksgiving traditions is that they’re all really weird. At different times in America’s history, people have dressed up in creepy masks, or pretended to be homeless people. Thanksgiving isn’t a holiday that’s usually connected to strange celebrations, but after reading this list you’ll see that America’s turkey day really is the epicenter of a lot of weird rituals.

Vote up the strangest Thanksgiving traditions below, and be sure to let us know what you think in the comment section. 
1 73 VOTES

Frozen Turkey Bowling

Frozen Turkey Bowling is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list 17 of the Strangest Thanksgiving Traditions Ever
Photo: via Imgur

At the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse,  their most popular Thanksgiving tradition is an event called Frozen Turkey Bowling where people hurl frozen, oiled-up turkeys down a grocery store aisle at a set of bowling pins. Their event raises money to combat smoking, which is an awesome reason to throw a dead, frozen, bird at a bunch of bowling pins.

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2 73 VOTES

Black Friday

Black Friday is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list 17 of the Strangest Thanksgiving Traditions Ever
Photo: via Reddit

Can we all admit that Black Friday is the worst holiday ever? It's basically just an excuse for middle-aged women to stomp one another to death in a Macy's parking lot over a discounted Keurig. Like Mother's Day and Valentines Day, Black Friday wasn't even a thing until we decided it was, and started camping out in front of Target to buy TVs at a slight discount.

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3 61 VOTES

The Turkey Trot

The Turkey Trot is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list 17 of the Strangest Thanksgiving Traditions Ever
Photo: via Twitter

Turkey trot 5Ks happen all over the country. Thousands of full-grown adults each year don turkey costumes and go jogging before consuming billions of calories later that evening. Although it's probably just a ploy to get out of helping your mom make all those side dishes before your crazy Uncle Larry shows up and falls asleep in the potato salad, turkey trots are definitely a weird Thanksgiving tradition to behold. 

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4 76 VOTES

Pardoning a Turkey

Pardoning a Turkey is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list 17 of the Strangest Thanksgiving Traditions Ever
Photo: via Twitter

In 1947, a weird tradition known as the National Thanksgiving Turkey Presentation was founded under the Truman administration. However, Ronald Reagan was actually the first present to formally "pardon" one of the turkeys given to him. Truman, Eisenhower, and several other presidents actually ate the turkeys presented to them. In 1988, George H.W. Bush instituted the turkey pardon as a national tradition while he was in office. 

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