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For many families, Thanksgiving is a time to give thanks, gather with loved ones, and enjoy traditions passed down from generation to generation. You might start the day with the annual viewing of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and start your holiday meal by going around the table so everyone can share what they are most thankful for this year. While time-honored traditions are cherished, you can always kick your festivities up to a new level by adding in a new tradition or two. Here are just a few the folks at Woody’s Bar-B-Q dug up that just might enhance your Thanksgiving Celebration this year…

Tap Woody’s Bar-B-Q as Your Turkey Day HQ

Okay, so we didn’t exactly dig this one up, but we’re big fans of this particular suggestion, and we think you will be, too! While they might not be YOUR family’s recipes, many of the ones featured in the Woody’s Bar-B-Q menu have been in our family for generations. By ordering a whole smoked turkey, our comfort food sides, and our decadent selection of desserts from Woody’s Bar-B-Q, you’ll free yourself up to truly enjoy the holiday and your guests. If you have an old family recipe or two that your guests will expect, chances are that they will sit beautifully on your Thanksgiving table next to our turkey, macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes and gravy, green or lima beans, collard greens, and more. More of a mixologist than a cook? Consider designing a signature cocktail for the festivities, and we’ll do all the cooking for you! View our full menu HERE and visit our locations page to find the Woody’s near you. You might want to call ahead to ask about any specials they are running for the holiday and place your order. (NOTE: we are not open on Thanksgiving Day, so our team members can enjoy the holiday with their own families, so turkeys and sides must be picked up before the holiday.)

Pay It Forward to Families in Need

As host/hostess, many Thanksgiving guests will ask you, “What can I bring?” It’s a heartbreaking fact that – according to Feeding America – of Florida’s population (where Woody’s Bar-B-Q is based), 2,314,370 people are facing hunger – and 613,180 of them are children. That’s 1 in 9 Floridians! Before the BIG DAY, let your guests know that you will be taking up a collection of non-perishable foods to deliver to a local food pantry. Many grocery stores will offer specials leading up to Turkey Day so your guests can pull together a big haul. Have a box set up where they can place their donations as they arrive for Thanksgiving at your house. While those families in need won’t have the items you collect in time to grace their own Thanksgiving tables, the food you provide will be much appreciated by them over the remainder of the holiday season. Feeding America provides a list of food banks where you can take your donations.

Design a Distraction

While you’re in the kitchen catching up with family members and readying the meal, have a fun craft on hand for the kids to tackle. Have a spot where you can set up their gallery and take photos of your little artists with their works of art. They’ll be filled with pride as your guests file past their work and gush about their talent. Need some extra time to prepare and want to keep them distracted a little longer. Have them create one craft for the gallery and another to give as a gift to a grownup at your gathering – like a Christmas ornament they can hang on their tree. If you need a little inspiration, Good Housekeeping offers a fun-filled list of 40 holiday kid-friendly crafts. Each year, come up with a new craft or two for the kids to try and set out the photos of their past works so they know this tradition is all their own.

Stretch Those Legs

Once the Thanksgiving feast has come to an end and your guests have all stretched the parameters of their waistbands, it might be time to give those legs a stretch, too. Invite everyone to take a “second-wind stroll” around your neighborhood. You might encounter a neighbor or two along the way, offering an opportunity for you to wish them a Happy Thanksgiving. If you’re embarking on your stroll after dark, some of your neighboring homes may be strung with Christmas lights, enhancing the holiday spirit. While you walk, have a list of conversation starters in mind to get everyone talking, such as “What is your favorite Thanksgiving memory?” or “What do you want for Christmas?” Not only will this be an excellent opportunity to walk off that full feeling, but it’s also a great chance to truly connect with your guests. By the time you walk back into the house, you and your guests might be ready for a slice of our SKY-HIGH PIE! This tradition can be observed at any holiday gathering – Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter, too!

Kick Off the Holiday Season with an Annual Movie Premiere

Once the dishes have been cleared from your Thanksgiving table, have everyone cozy up in front of the TV and host a holiday movie premiere. Pick an old favorite or a movie that just became available for streaming. Consider the audience, and if it’s a mix of young and old, stick with a family-friendly flick. Insider lists A Christmas Story, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, Elf, and Home Alone among its list of the best holiday movies of all time. Supply lots of blankets, and if someone falls asleep, no judgment! For those who can’t sit still, task them with setting up and decorating the Christmas tree in the corner. While it sounds simple, it will kick the holiday spirit into high gear as everyone realizes Christmas is just around the corner!

From all of us here at Woody’s Bar-B-Q, we wish you and yours a very Happy Thanksgiving!


KB 10/27/23