Celebrating the Spirit of a Hostel Thanksgiving

19 November 2018

Thanksgiving is the perfect hosteller’s holiday because it’s all about getting together with friends old and new, eating lots of great food, and reflecting on the things that you’re grateful for. So, whether you’re an American familiar with the holiday’s traditions, or a traveler who’s new to it all, there’s some magic to be found at this time of year, even if you’re on the road. 

HI USA hostels across the country host Turkey Day feasts with all the trimmings for guests, and everyone ends up feeling like family for the day as they share stories and make connections. Take a look at a snapshot of what Thanksgiving is like when you celebrate at a hostel. 

The vegetarian-friendly spread at HI Portland Hawthorne hostel is open to the community as well as guests, so the locals can explain things like how pumpkin pie can be a dessert and why turkey is a big deal in the first place. 

travelers celebrating thanksgiving at HI Portland Hawthorne hostel

At HI Richmond, Thanksgiving tends to be a volunteer-led affair, with groups like the AmeriCorps dedicating some of their service time to making a big meal for hostel guests. 

a group of people sharing a meal at HI Richmond hostel

The folks at HI Washington DC get into the spirit of gratitude and ask all the hostellers to share what they are grateful for before tucking into the feast and enjoying local, live music. 

guests eating together in the kitchen at HI Washington DC hostel

One year, a family took over the kitchen at HI Sacramento for their Thanksgiving dinner, and it ended up being a lively celebration with hostel guests joining the meal and becoming members of the giant family for the day . This spirit has continued through the years. 

“Some love our hostel holiday so much that they have come back each year for two or three years now. It's a great mixing pot and we all get to spend a few hours of quality time sharing a really special meal together,” says hostel manager Briana Santos. 

a Thanksgiving dinner in the dining room at HI Sacramento hostel

Thanksgiving at HI San Francisco City Center hostel is unique and special every year because the staff and guests are so eclectic and creative. The menu changes each year, with themes like "Food for the Soul" with soul food trimmings and "Summer of Love" in honor of San Francisco's history. One thing you can always count on is the stellar decorations to really set the mood. 

the decorations and food at HI San Francisco City Center hostel at thanksgiving

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