By Darren Nelson, feature writer for My Local Utah
For most of us, Thanksgiving is a time for big family gatherings, Turkey, and pie. It’s a time to reunite with parents, siblings, grandparents, and maybe some extended family too. My childhood memories of the Thanksgiving holiday revolved around my grandparents, as they hosted all the family—aunts, uncles, and cousins included—at their home. There was plenty of food and pie for everyone. In fact, each family got some doggy bags to take home. We had three tables: the grown-up table for the married adults, the kid’s table for smaller children, and the big-kids table for everyone else in between.
One of my more memorable Thanksgiving took place in college. My grandparents had long since passed on, and my immediate family was spread out across the country, so I was invited to my cousin’s family Thanksgiving dinner. However, this Thanksgiving was not held in their home, but instead at a hotel restaurant in Salt Lake City. This outside-the-home event would have been something my grandmother would never agree to when she was alive. The dinner itself was good, though there weren’t doggy bags for everyone—but having someone else do the cooking, the cleaning, all the set-up and take-down was a definite plus. After dinner, we retreated to my aunt’s cozy family room for pie. There we relaxed and shared memories, laughs, and things each of us was grateful for in our lives. I found the whole holiday rewarding with plenty of family togetherness without the headache of planning a big family dinner.
Since that time, I have discovered that this is how many like to spend their thanksgiving. If spending time together with the family is a must for you but letting someone else take care of the dinner part, then I would suggest the dinner out and the pie latter at home approach. (Plus, the pie variety and portions are usually more abundant at home. My family likes to snack, play games, watch movies, and maybe hit some early Black Friday openings.
A big drawback to Thanksgiving out is the cost. Dining out is a more expensive option than preparing your own feast at home. If you factor in the time of labor put into making Thanksgiving dinner yourself, then maybe the price-tag is worth it. Another drawback is getting reservations (required by most restaurants with a Thanksgiving dinner). These dining experiences sell-out quickly, so plan now.
Either way, whether you a planning a trip over-the-river-and-through-the-woods to grandma’s house or a local eatery, we at local Utah wish you a happy Thanksgiving.
Some of the local restaurants with Thanksgiving Dinner
Downtown Salt Lake City
Salt Lake City, Sandy,
Wasatch/East Sandy, Park City,
Layton, St. George, Springville,
Midvale, Salt Lake City
Downtown Salt Lake City
Cedar City, Layton, Midvale,
Ogden, Orem, St. George
Farmington, Orem, Salt Lake City
Bountiful, Draper, Clinton,
Holladay, Layton, Logan, Park
City, Provo, South Jordan, South
Downtown Salt Lake