Thanksgiving the Vegan Way at Happy Trails Farm Sanctuary

By Published On: 3 October 2015Last Updated: 17 January 2017

Happy Trails will be celebrating Thanksgiving with a completely vegan buffet and desserts and an opportunity to shop for animal-friendly holiday gifts which directly benefit the sanctuary.

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By Jenny Canham, Guest Contributor, Sanctuary Spotlight

Not living in America myself, I have always been jealous of the never-ending American holidays. It seems like the next big event is always just round the corner, and one I’ve always found particularly intriguing is Thanksgiving Day. Celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November, we all have a clear image in our minds of what Thanksgiving looks like. When I picture Thanksgiving, I think of people coming together to celebrate and, well, give thanks. But at the centre of all this coming together, I can’t help but imagine a packed dinner table, at the centre of which is an unfortunate turkey.

It seems crazy that turkeys, who were once considered a national symbol of America, together with the bald eagle, have been reduced to such little respect, which is particularly evident at this celebration. An estimated 45 million turkeys are cooked and eaten in the U.S. for the traditional Thanksgiving dinner, which is one sixth of all turkeys sold in the U.S. each year, obviously with Christmas being another major call for turkey meat. (1)

It seems to me that this confuses the whole Thanksgiving message – giving thanks for what you are lucky enough to have, but at the expense of another living being’s life? Again it’s that little word that most vegans have come to know and despise throughout our cruelty-free journey – ‘tradition’.

Thankfully, there are plenty of ways you can celebrate the holiday in a completely animal-friendly way. More and more people around the country are breaking this part of the holiday tradition, and giving thanks whilst not contributing to the suffering of others. One way to do this is to cook up your own delicious vegan feast; you can get tips on how our Vegan Thanksgiving Guide. Or you can celebrate with other like-minded people and attend an event, such as Happy Trails Compassionate Thanksgiving Buffet.


Jollie is a resident at Happy Trails Farm Sanctuary.

Happy Trails Farm Sanctuary is a non-profit organization based in Ohio, which rescues and rehabilitates neglected farm animals, including our turkey friends. They provide the animals with much needed medical care, proper nutrition, clean and safe housing, and, of course, plenty of TLC. They offer sanctuary tours, adoption programmes, and events such as their upcoming Compassionate Vegan Buffet.

So what better way to celebrate Thanksgiving than by hanging out with some happy turkeys that are living life completely free from factory farms? Happy Trails will be celebrating the holiday with a completely vegan buffet and desserts, an opportunity to shop for animal-friendly holiday gifts which directly benefit the sanctuary, a presentation by Founder and Director, Annette Fisher, and plenty of music and holiday spirit amongst fellow compassionate people. And an extra bonus…it all takes place before Thanksgiving Day, so you might want to have a second vegan celebration of your own!

Plan Your Trip

What:  Happy Trails Compassionate Buffet

When:  Saturday, November 14th from 5.00pm

Where:  Todaro’s Party Center, 1820 Akron Peninsula Rd., Akron, OH

Admission:  $55 per person and are likely to sell out so get yours early at


  1. Infoplease. “Turkey Facts.” Retrieved September 24, 2015

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HELLO! I'm KD Angle-Traegner.

Writer, activist, and founder of Four Urban Paws Sanctuary. I’m on a mission to help people live a vegan life. Read more about KD…