Thanksgiving Turkey Tales

Mackenna Briggs

Students and staff at Liberty shared their Thankgiving traditions: this is what it means to be a Patriot during  an American holiday:


CODY HUGHES (Freshman)

For the past six years on Thanksgiving, my family and I have gone down to Coal Field Park at 10am to play a football game. My dad and grandpa have been the designated team captains every year, so the teams vary.

I have a big family, but we only do the football game with my dad’s side, so there are about twenty people who play. It’s all really fun.

There wasn’t a reason behind making this a tradition. One day we just decided to go play a game of football and it stuck.


Every year, as close as we can get to Thanksgiving, Ms. Daughters (the swim coach) gives us a really long, challenging swim set called The Gobbler. After practice, as kind of a reward, she buys us around 15 pizzas that get delivered to the pool and we eat together upstairs. It’s kind of a way to get into the Thanksgiving spirit and also a celebration of surviving The Gobbler.

Ms. Daughters says she has done this little Thanksgiving tradition for the past seven years to give us a pre-Thanksgiving meal.

We always have a competition on who can eat the most pizzas, and I think I’m going to win this year. The record is one whole pizza and I think Logan Briggs holds it.



Every year before my entire family comes over for Thanksgiving, my immediate family hand-makes a centerpiece for the dinner table.

We get real branches and make a mini tree that has things we are grateful for hung on it on paper cut out leaves. We usually get some kind of lights to hang on it too and it is a really great way to get into the Thanksgiving spirit.


ROBIN BARCLAY (Counseling Secretary)

In September 2004, Curt, my husband, was diagnosed with cancer and had a pretty significant surgery two weeks before Thanksgiving.

Following surgery he needed quiet and rest, so we decided… my little family of three… to check OUT.

Checking OUT, to us, meant forgoing the traditional tribal event with my huge family and checking INTO a hotel in downtown Seattle for the weekend.

We went out for Thanksgiving dinner, were first in line at the Macy’s Holiday Parade, did ALL of our Christmas shopping and went to the movies. It was the perfect Thanksgiving for us!

The following year, Curt had fully recovered and I asked if we should re-engage with the family for Thanksgiving.

“Are you nuts?!” he responded. “Last year was the best Thanksgiving we’ve ever had! Make the reservations.”

This year will be our 10th year of Thanksgiving in Seattle.


STEVE DARNELL (Social Studies Teacher)

The whole idea for my families’ Thanksgiving is to maximize the eating experience.

Our day starts out at 7-7:30am with an early breakfast. Typically this breakfast is something that will expand your stomach. Usually we make pumpkin or blueberry pancakes and try to get as full as possible.

We skip lunch, and throughout the day whenever we feel hungry we drink water. It satiates us while cleansing us out to prepare for the upcoming meal.

When mealtime comes – at around 4pm – we are dressed from the waist up in “Grandma Tested Clothing,” meaning our ties and dresses and whatnot. From the waist down, we wear sweats or something with an elastic waistband to help with comfort.

It is very important, I have found, to eat in a certain order. First, the turkey or meat of your meal; my family is vegetarian so we eat tofurkey. Second, the vegetable course; third, the potatoes; then you always get another round of your favorite.

But really, the key is maximizing. Get up early for breakfast.