Happy Thanksgiving from Ambassador Phillips and Ms. Douglass

Nov 28, 2013 1255

Thanksgiving is a uniquely American tradition. It began with the Pilgrims who had endured a brutal journey from England to America to begin new lives in what they called the New World. In November 1621, a year later, they held a feast —giving thanks for the harvest and for the generosity of their Native American neighbors who showed them how to plant the crops, that enabled them to survive their first harsh winter.

Thus Thanksgiving was born as a celebration of sharing and of community.President Lincoln proclaimed it a holiday in the mid-1800's. But rather than becoming a day of patriotic remembrance, Thanksgiving has kept its original meaning. It is a day to celebrate family, friends and community. It is a day to be grateful and a day to share. To honor that tradition, many Americans all over the world will be volunteering in soup kitchens, distributing food to the less fortunate, providing friendship to those who are alone—and, of course, gathering with loved ones.

For Americans around the world, Thanksgiving is also a day of food. Here at Villa Taverna, we are preparing dinner with all the traditional dishes: corn, sweet potatoes, pumpkin pie, stuffing, and a Turkey. The immigrants who have come to America over the decades often enriched that traditional meal with their own special touches. My Italian grandmother always added gnocchi to our Thanksgiving dinner.

So, greetings and Happy Thanksgiving to all our friends In Italia.

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