Thanksgiving in Canada in 2023

Thanksgiving in Canada in 2023

  How long until Thanksgiving?
Thanksgiving
  Dates of Thanksgiving in Canada
2024 Oct 14
CanadaMon, Oct 14Government Holiday
AlbertaMon, Oct 14Regional Holiday
British ColumbiaMon, Oct 14Regional Holiday
ManitobaMon, Oct 14Regional Holiday
New BrunswickMon, Oct 14Regional Holiday
Newfoundland and LabradorMon, Oct 14Regional Holiday
Northwest TerritoriesMon, Oct 14Regional Holiday
Nova ScotiaMon, Oct 14Not A Public Holiday
NunavutMon, Oct 14Regional Holiday
OntarioMon, Oct 14Regional Holiday
QuebecMon, Oct 14Regional Holiday
SaskatchewanMon, Oct 14Regional Holiday
YukonMon, Oct 14Regional Holiday
2023 Oct 9
CanadaMon, Oct 9Government Holiday
AlbertaMon, Oct 9Regional Holiday
British ColumbiaMon, Oct 9Regional Holiday
ManitobaMon, Oct 9Regional Holiday
New BrunswickMon, Oct 9Regional Holiday
Newfoundland and LabradorMon, Oct 9Regional Holiday
Northwest TerritoriesMon, Oct 9Regional Holiday
Nova ScotiaMon, Oct 9Not A Public Holiday
NunavutMon, Oct 9Regional Holiday
OntarioMon, Oct 9Regional Holiday
QuebecMon, Oct 9Regional Holiday
SaskatchewanMon, Oct 9Regional Holiday
YukonMon, Oct 9Regional Holiday
2022 Oct 10
CanadaMon, Oct 10Government Holiday
AlbertaMon, Oct 10Regional Holiday
British ColumbiaMon, Oct 10Regional Holiday
New BrunswickMon, Oct 10Regional Holiday
Newfoundland and LabradorMon, Oct 10Regional Holiday
Northwest TerritoriesMon, Oct 10Regional Holiday
Nova ScotiaMon, Oct 10Not A Public Holiday
NunavutMon, Oct 10Regional Holiday
OntarioMon, Oct 10Regional Holiday
QuebecMon, Oct 10Regional Holiday
SaskatchewanMon, Oct 10Regional Holiday
YukonMon, Oct 10Regional Holiday
2021 Oct 11
CanadaMon, Oct 11Government Holiday
AlbertaMon, Oct 11Regional Holiday
British ColumbiaMon, Oct 11Regional Holiday
ManitobaMon, Oct 11Regional Holiday
New BrunswickMon, Oct 11Regional Holiday
Newfoundland and LabradorMon, Oct 11Regional Holiday
Northwest TerritoriesMon, Oct 11Regional Holiday
Nova ScotiaMon, Oct 11Not A Public Holiday
NunavutMon, Oct 11Regional Holiday
OntarioMon, Oct 11Regional Holiday
QuebecMon, Oct 11Regional Holiday
SaskatchewanMon, Oct 11Regional Holiday
YukonMon, Oct 11Regional Holiday
2020 Oct 12
CanadaMon, Oct 12Government Holiday
AlbertaMon, Oct 12Regional Holiday
British ColumbiaMon, Oct 12Regional Holiday
ManitobaMon, Oct 12Regional Holiday
New BrunswickMon, Oct 12Regional Holiday
Newfoundland and LabradorMon, Oct 12Regional Holiday
Northwest TerritoriesMon, Oct 12Regional Holiday
Nova ScotiaMon, Oct 12Not A Public Holiday
NunavutMon, Oct 12Regional Holiday
OntarioMon, Oct 12Regional Holiday
QuebecMon, Oct 12Regional Holiday
SaskatchewanMon, Oct 12Regional Holiday
YukonMon, Oct 12Regional Holiday
  Summary

Celebrated on the Second Monday in October and statutory, except in Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island.

  Which regions observe Canadian Thanksgiving in 2023?
National Holiday Regional Holiday Not a public holiday Govt Holiday

When is Canadian Thanksgiving?

Canadian Thanksgiving is celebrated on the second Monday in October and is an official statutory holiday, except in Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island.

In Nova Scotia, Thanksgiving is a Designated Retail Closing Day. This means under the Retail Business Designated Day Closing Act, some retail businesses are prohibited from opening, but it is not a paid holiday.

Traditions of Canadian Thanksgiving

On Thanksgiving, Canadians give thanks for a successful year and harvest.

The Thanksgiving holiday tradition in Canada dates back to when the English explorer, Martin Frobisher, came upon the land we now know as Canada while searching for a Northern passage to the Orient.

When Frobisher arrived in Canada on his third voyage in 1578, he held a formal ceremony where he gave thanks for surviving the long journey - one of his ships had been lost on the way. Frobisher celebrated with salt beef and peas. South of the border, it would be another 43 years before the Pilgrims sat down to celebrate their first Thanksgiving meal.

Apart from taking place years before its American counterpart, Canadian thanksgiving also takes place over a month earlier. One reason is that the harvest season starts earlier in the more northerly Canada than it does in the US. 

Initially, this festival was held on November 6th each year, irrespective of what day of the week it was. However, in 1908, railway workers lobbied for it to be held on Mondays so they could take a long weekend. 

Thanksgiving became a nationally recognised holiday in Canada in 1879. The date of the holiday has moved around a few times since then, and settled on the current date in 1957.

Today, it is celebrated by gathering with loved ones and preparing the Thanksgiving Day meal, which usually includes turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberry sauce, and many other dishes. There are often regional variations on the meal. For instance, Newfoundlanders might hark back to Frobisher's original feast and serve Jiggs' dinner, a boiled meat dish often paired with a split-pea pudding. Instead of pumpkin pie, Ontarians often serve butter tarts, bite-sized pastry shells stuffed with a syrupy filling.

In the regions where Canadian Thanksgiving is celebrated, most government offices will be closed and so will many local amenities. Public transport is likely to run on a holiday or Sunday schedule. Banks will be closed along with the Toronto Stock Exchange.

In New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island, where the day isn't a holiday, employers aren't required to pay their employees for the day off so families often celebrate their thanksgiving on the Sunday before instead.

Differences between Canadian and American Thanksgiving

  • In Canada, it is celebrated on the second Monday of October, while in the United States it is celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November.
  • Canada celebrates the voyage of explorer Frobisher in 1578, and in the United States, the Native Americans helping pilgrims get food in Massachusetts in 1621 is remembered.
  • In the United States, Thanksgiving became a national holiday in 1789, while in Canada Thanksgiving became official nearly a century later.
  • Turkey is a dish that is a key part of both Thanksgiving celebrations. But in Canada, other dishes are added, such as Jiggs dinner and butter tartlet.
  • In the United States, the day after Thanksgiving is Black Friday, with the largest number of offers in stores in the country. However, this did not happen in Canada, because the main day for sales promotions is Boxing Day, which takes place on December 26th.
  • Canadian holidays are smaller than American holidays. Residents gather as a family and enjoy sporting shows and events, but on a smaller scale. In addition, most people choose to organize celebrations on Saturday or Sunday and take advantage of Monday to rest before returning to work.

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