Along with the United States, other countries have some types of celebrations similar to our country’s November tradition. Here is a look at a few of them, along with their origins and customs. Happy Thanksgiving!

Canada

Occurring the second Monday of October, the celebration incorporates many of the same traditions Americans follow- from turkey and football to a Thanksgiving parade. First celebrated in 1879 to recognize successful harvests and other blessings of the year. Most of the country acknowledges the holiday while it is considered an optional holiday for the Atlantic provinces.

Australia

Similar to American Thanksgiving, it is celebrated on the last Wednesday of November on the nearby island of Northern Norfolk. It originated from sailors and those aboard whaling ships bringing the tradition to the Australian island. In recent years turkey has become a more common food item to serve on the holiday.

Australia also has many harvest festivals occurring around Easter and the country’s National Day of Thanks on the last Saturday of May. Every March, the town of Stanthorpe holds the Apple and Grape Harvest Festival, considered part of the Australian Thanksgiving ritual. 

Japan

The November holiday -Labor Thanksgiving Day, is typically held on the 23rd. Its origins date back to a Shinto ritual enacted by the emperor. It obtained official holiday status during post-World War II when the United States was in occupation of Japan. Today’s modern Japanese event commemorates labor, production, and peace. Family dinners are a common occurrence of the day.

Liberia

Even though Liberia declared its independence from America in 1847, they continue to celebrate Thanksgiving. The celebration is on the first Thursday of the month, recognizing the resettlement colony for freed American slaves. Music, song and dance, spicy food and roasted chickens, green bean casserole, and mashed cassavas are common celebratory customs for the area.