Thanksgiving meals with friends instead of family now common

first_imgRachel Posner, a 30-year-old financial supervisor, has a huge extended family in Baltimore, but she’ll be spending this Thanksgiving at Canter’s Deli, the famous Fairfax District eatery. Like countless other L.A. transplants, she’ll be spending the holiday locally with friends rather than boarding a plane for a trip that would take longer than the time she would actually spend with relatives. “I don’t have anyone here, but my friends are a second family,” said Posner, who posted notice of the Thanksgiving dinner at Canter’s at the social networking Web site Meetup.com. Posner’s extended family includes hundreds of aunts, uncles and cousins, who meet monthly in Baltimore to discuss family business. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREStriving toward a more perfect me: Doug McIntyre The clan also meets for big dinners at Passover and sometime in December, and Posner tries to get back for those events. But Thanksgiving is different. “We used to do the traditional Thanksgiving dinner at home, and then my parents split when I was in my teens. Then my grandma did it, but she’s 94. So now everybody does their own thing.” One year, when Posner was living in Atlanta, she wound up spending Thanksgiving alone with a TV dinner. After that, she vowed to always have a plan for the holiday. She said at least half the group she expects at Canter’s is originally from the East Coast, with no relatives in Southern California. However, there’s always a contingent who does have family nearby but would rather spend the holiday with friends. Indeed, plenty of natives prefer the friends-as-family Thanksgiving, too. Yoga teacher Psalm Isadora grew up on a commune in Mendocino but instead of eating turkey with family, she plans to enjoy vegetarian and vegan Indian food – and turkey from Koo Koo Roo – at a Methodist church in Santa Monica. “I usually end up at someone else’s party, so I thought it would be fun to throw this event,” said Isadora, who has fond memories of weekly potlucks with other families in the commune. Her potluck at the Church in Ocean Park will bring guests from Altadena, Torrance and Long Beach, and there may be a little yoga thrown in, if guests are up for it after stuffing themselves. “Breaking bread together is viewed as sacred ritual in many spiritual traditions, and is simply a pleasant way to spend time together,” Isadora said on her online ad for the party. Bill Cunningham hasn’t had a traditional family Thanksgiving in 13 years, not since he moved to Los Angeles from Buffalo, N.Y. In the intervening years, he’s spent the most American of holidays in the company of friends. One year, he and a roommate drove to Yosemite, where they sat around a campfire and dined on precooked turkey and trimmings from Ralphs. This year, Cunningham, who recently moved from Van Nuys to a loft in downtown Los Angeles, is organizing an Orphan Thanksgiving pub crawl that will end up in the back room of a bar where friend and stranger alike will share a Thanksgiving potluck. “I’m thinking about Seven Grand Whiskey Bar,” he said. “I’m going to see if that’s available.” [email protected] 818-713-3662160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img

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