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Fun Thanksgiving Facts

When Abe Lincoln declared Thanksgiving a national holiday, it was thanks to the tireless efforts of a magazine editor named Sarah Josepha Hale. Her other claim to fame? She also wrote the nursery rhyme “Mary had a Little Lamb.”

Only male turkeys, called toms, gobble. Females, called hens, cackle.

Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin’s first meal in space after walking on the moon was foil packets with roasted turkey.

Fossil evidence shows that turkeys roamed the Americas 10 million years ago.

A spooked turkey can run at speeds up to 20 miles per hour. They can also burst into flight approaching speeds between 50-55 mph in a matter of seconds.

There are three places in the United States named after the holiday’s traditional main course – Turkey, TX; Turkey Creek, LA; and Turkey, NC. There are also nine townships around the country named “Turkey,” with three in Kansas.

Snoopy has appeared as a giant balloon in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade more times than any other character in history. As the Flying Ace, Snoopy made his sixth appearance in the 2006 parade and has been featured a total of 39 times.

The average American will consume 4,500 calories on Thanksgiving.

The first TV dinner was Thanksgiving leftovers. Retired Swanson executive Gerry Thomas said he came up with the idea after the company found itself with a huge surplus of frozen turkeys because of poor Thanksgiving sales.

The night before Thanksgiving is the single biggest day for bar sales in the US.

Black Friday isn’t just busy for retailers; it’s also the busiest day of the year for plumbers.

64% of Americans drank wine with their Thanksgiving dinner in 2015.

The average Black Friday shopper spent $299.60 in 2015, which was down from the $380.95 in 2014.

According to the United States Department of Transportation’s holiday travel statistics, travel to a destination 50 miles or more away increases by 54% over Thanksgiving weekend and by only 23% during Christmas and New Year’s.