October 21, 2021

Bucs Life

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Thanksgiving & Football: It’s Tradition

5 min read

Thanksgiving Day is a time for family, friends, good food, and of course, giving thanks. The day is rooted deeply in family tradition dating back over 400 years. Football became a large part of Thanksgiving since the late 1800s and quickly became a family tradition of its own. Whatever your family traditions are on this day of giving thanks, we would like to wish you a happy Thanksgiving!

Bucs Life Media family and friends wish to share some of their traditions with you.

“Football and Thanksgiving! My favorite time of the Football season is watching the Lions lose and eating turkey! I’m a Bucs fan living in Michigan, so I’m in Lion lover country! One year my nephews and their Dad were at the game on Thanksgiving and got chosen to be a part of the live halftime show! Two games, turkey, mash potatoes, green beans, and all the fixins’ what could be better? Well, a playoff appearance for our beloved Bucs and hopefully a deep run towards the BIG GAME would be the dessert. I hope you all have a great day and eat up! As always, Go Bucs!” – Bryan Carman (Buc79)

“The traditions in the Butler household on Thanksgiving include activities such as spending time together as a family, watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, gathering around the table, and eating Thanksgiving dinner together. We also play games and eat pie, later on, all while watching the Thanksgiving Day NFL Football games.

I came up with my five Fs of Thanksgiving. They are; 1. Family 2. Friends 3. Food 4. Football 5. FunHappy Thanksgiving to all of our Bucs family out there!” – Jordan Butler 

“Thanksgiving day in the Jensen house was and is God, Family, Food, and Football!! We rarely had a Thanksgiving without a house full of family. Front yard football and the traditional NFL game on the TV was a must! The leftover meals in the evenings are always epic. To celebrate another year with everyone present was and is the best blessing of this time of year!” – Dean Jensen 

“Thanksgiving day and football always have great memories, although I wish the Bucs would get a few Thanksgiving games, getting together with family while the game is going on is always a great time and now that my son and daughter are no longer kids and they are 25 and 22 and living on their own, getting together has an even more of meaning now cause I get together with them and always cherish those times.” – Scott Bradford 

“Thanksgiving, Madden, and the family football game: Thanksgiving was all about eating and football for me growing up. All the relatives would come down from Orlando to Lake Wales. During those cherished days, there would be about 15 to 20 family members make the trek south down I-4 and US 27. There were the NFL games for which we all were glued to the set for at least the males anyway. Everyone would have a plate of appetizers, and those that could, a beer. Everyone talked a little football smack as the game progressed. About an hour or two before the meal was spread and before the uncles and Grandpas were too far along with their beer. We would all go out into the front yard and up to the street and pick teams for the annual Family Football Game. This consisted of four to five players on a team, grandkids, and all joined in. I was about 12 in the middle of those days. Grandpas of around the age of 60-65. Uncles 18-50, Great Uncles 60-65, nephews 8-12; all out there on a hard paved road playing touch football. I forgot the neighbor kids often joined in as well; they were 7 and 10. CAR!! Would be yelled out by the first that saw it, and teams would part to the different sides of the road it’s like time went into slow motion at those moments, taking the car at least ten minutes to drive by; at least it seemed like it. One of the uncles would cheat in some way, or one of the Grandpas couldn’t go on another play, or the dinner was being set out, and the game would get called with everyone heading for a sink to clean up before we ate the bird. We all had to see who won the giant turkey leg after the Madden game. So while the good women of the affair were cleaning up, the guys found a tv and plopped down to find out. The tryptophan and beer combined to knock many of the adults out for a short nap. Then everyone came back together for a bowl of orange pudding (made with real orange pieces and whip cream) – A longtime family tradition on that special day. To end the night, the adults sat down at the dining room table and played Tripoli. A game consisting of three-card game hearts, Poker, and Michigan Rummy. The bets of pennies, dimes, and nickles would be made before each round (ante), then betting would resume with each game played. All the adults would make sure that they accidentally dropped money on the floor if it hit the floor, there it stayed until the next morning when the kids would get up and dive in. I loved our family back then. Now there isn’t much left of it around anymore. Those days of football and Thanksgiving will always remain in my heart and soul forever. Now, it’s down to just 6 family members, and two can’t do it this year, and one is working. So my wife Connie, and my Mother Judy, and I will sit down on that day and watch football. One thing never changes.” – JD Stenger 

“Thanksgiving is a holiday in which we give thanks for whatever we are thankful for. For the last 7 years, I haven’t been around the family for Thanksgiving due to military commitments. This year, I get to have both of my sisters and my dad around me, so I’m very thankful. Don’t really have a tradition, but generally, the thanksgiving holiday is spent watching the NFL games and just relaxing and eating good food.” – Cory Hays