6 Fascinating Turkey and Turkey Day Facts

Since most of us will be eating turkey in 10 days… and perhaps several additional days thereafter… I thought we should begin our Vinesse TODAY countdown to Thanksgiving with a few fascinating facts about turkeys and Turkey Day.

1. The late billionaire Howard Hughes could have dined on Chateaubriand twice daily and never gotten a cautionary call from his accountant. But according to the book, “Howard Hughes: The Hidden Years”, by James Phelan, Hughes liked to eat frozen TV dinners — particularly the turkey entrée from Swanson’s. The eccentric industrialist would have preferred that Swanson’s serve peach cobbler with that meal, rather than apple cobbler, and dispatched an aide to make that request of the frozen dinner maker. When Swanson’s declined, Hughes tried, unsuccessfully, to buy the company.

2. According to American Way magazine, 1621 was the first year Thanksgiving was celebrated in America. But it wasn’t until 242 years later, in 1863, that President Abraham Lincoln made Thanksgiving a national holiday.

3. Also according to American Way, the average number of calories consumed during the Thanksgiving dinner… presumably with all the trimmings… is a belt-stretching 4,500. Gulp! (Not to mention… burp!)

4. Few companies know more about turkeys than Butterball, and according to a Butterball survey of 305 adults, ages 25-64, the most common use for leftover turkey is for making soup. Casseroles come in a close second, followed by cold salads. What happened to the good ol’, plain ol’ turkey sandwich?

5. An adult male turkey is known as a tom. A young male turkey is known as a jake.

6. The technological revolution in bowling is responsible for virtually eliminating a formerly common bowling center promotion during the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving. It used to be that centers would award a turkey to any league bowler who registered strikes in the 3rd, 6th and 9th frames of a single game. But because high-tech bowling balls have made rolling strikes so easy today, that practice has been largely abandoned.

Tomorrow: Wine pairing strategies for Thanksgiving Day.

Posted in Editor's Journal
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