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Hosting an Orphan Thanksgiving

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Do you have friends who are miles away from home over the holidays? Thankfully there’s a way you can help make them feel a little less lonely.


An Orphan Thanksgiving is when someone hosts a special Thanksgiving at their home and invites friends (who don’t have anywhere to go) over to join in the festivities of giving thanks and eating a lot of turkey! Often times, there will be several people that don’t know each other at an Orphan Thanksgiving. Here are three tips on how to throw a warm and cozy Orphan Thanksgiving.

orphan thanksgiving name tags

1. Print out these icebreaker name tags to place at your guests’ table setting or to wear. On the tags, they can write their name, what state or city they’re from and what they’re thankful for. These are great conversation starters for the people who don’t know one another.

orphan thanksgiving potluck

2. Have everyone cook or bake something native to his or her home state, or a dish that was a staple at Thanksgiving growing up. For example, someone who grew up in Georgia can bake or bring a delicious peach pie to share. Not only does this help the hostess, but it allows the guests to get involved and have a little something to signify their hometown or family.

home bar for thanksgiving

3. Set up a drink station where people can make their own cocktails and mingle with others. It’s a great area for people to meet while they make a drink and socialize with other guests. It’s also much easier for the hostess to allow guests to serve themselves! If you're hosting on a budget, here's our guide to setting up The Basic Budget Bar.

Classic Thanksgiving Recipes


If you need help figuring out your menu, here are some classic Thanksgiving dinner recipes that will have your friends feeling right at home.
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