Celebrating Thanksgiving Irish American-style


What is the best part of Thanksgiving?

"No presents and a few days off work."

Mary McAleer from Dublin, now living in Yonkers.

"My favorite part of the holiday is the long weekend off. It always seems to be the one weekend when all the girls can escape for an evening and have a great night and not worry about having to be up in the morning."

Fiona Brennan, who is originally from Derry, now living in Cortlandt Manor, upstate New York with her husband John.

"Calling home to say Happy Thanksgiving and hearing, 'Happy what? Shur we don't do that here at all girl.'"

Olwyn Triggs, private investigator from Cork who lives in New York.

"My favorite part of the Thanksgiving holiday is my father George and my sister Siobhan's mouth-watering spread. After dinner, we all pick names out of a hat for our secret Santa Christmas gift exchange and have a bit of a sing-song, with my father being the star of the show with his guitar."

"This Thanksgiving is going to be particularly exiting because my cousins are coming to visit us from England. They have never witnessed Thanksgiving, but they are interested in viewing what this question mark of an American holiday is all about. Our day begins with Mass, proceeds with the watching of the amazing balloons of the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade, continues with a glorious dinner, and concludes with laughter, singing, and a bit of dancing."

Bernadette Gibbons, Queens, New York.

"Relaxing and having a four-day weekend. We also attend the Christmas tree lighting in Red Bank, New Jersey the day after."

Peter Carey, Locust, New Jersey.

"I think my favorite part of the holiday is the night before Thanksgiving because there is a mass exodus out of Boston and the place becomes fairly quiet, much like Dublin a few days before Christmas when all the country folk head for the hills."

Thomas Bonner, who hails from Donegal but moved to Boston to work withPricewaterhouse Coopers three years ago.

What plans do Irish people have this Thanksgiving?

"We will spend Thanksgiving with my wife Margaret and her brother John and sister-in-law Sarah. They cook and we bring the wine. I think we ended up with the better deal!"

Mike Brewster, who emigrated from Longford in June of 1989.

"I will be traveling to Cleveland where my roommate is from and enjoying Thanksgiving with her and her family, who I now consider to be my own."

Shelia Hughes, from Dublin but now living in Queens.

"I will be spending the day with my family. My mum is visiting from Ireland (Mayo) and is cooking dinner for us this year. There is nothing like your mother's cooking!"

Anne Marie Maxwell, Enterprise Ireland, Boston office.



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"This year we are having a very low key Thanksgiving and I am really looking forward to it considering the year I have had. My sister and I may attend the Thanksgiving Day Parade, the first time in about 10 years, and then we are going to cook Thanksgiving dinner at home, relax and watch movies. I am so excited just thinking about it!"

Lisa Murtagh, current Rose of Tralee from New York.

"I am very excited about my first thanksgiving in the U.S. I have been at a Thanksgiving dinner before in Dublin, because my best friend is married to an American, and I enjoyed that thoroughly. But this year is obviously different."

"I am going to dinner at an American friend's house, along with an English friend. There will be a few international people there, but the important thing is that it will be mostly Americans, so they can direct us in following the proper protocol and traditions. If that means drinking beers and watching football on TV for a good part of the day, well then so be it, that's the American way and I wouldn't want to offend my hosts!"

Conn Corrigan from Co. Tipperary.

What are Irish people thankful for this Thanksgiving?

"I'm thankful for the great people I have in my life, my family, my friends and my co-workers." Fiona Brennan.

"I am thankful to my school staff and principal here in the U.S. for making an Irish person feel welcome enough to be here for her sixth year. I am especially thankful to the children I teach and their families for adopting Irish culture and for being so involved with the Irish dancing and culture which I have brought to the school."

Caroline Duggan.

"My wife's homemade apple pie, and putting the feet up after dinner."

Tony Murphy, Prudential Ireland originally from South Armagh.