The Paper sent its intrepid reporters far and wide to come up with the inside scoops on all things Thanksgiving! So before you stuff yourself, unbuckle the belt and lay back to watch the Detroit Lions lose another football game, here are some interesting tidbits about today’s turkey day!

Brown Friday

According to the good folks at Rot-Rooter, Black Friday is one of the busiest days for plumbers. That’s because lots of food, scraps and grease go down the drain – and some of that ends up clogging things up. In addition to that, some houses have extra guests, so all those showers and demand adds up.

Seafood for Thanksgiving?

It’s highly unlikely that turkey was on the menu at the very first Thanksgiving. In fact, given the location on the east coast, it’s far more certain that seafood was. Thinks like oysters, lobster, eel and fish were probably served, along with duck, deer, pumpkins, squash and maize (corn).

Green bean casserole

Believe it or not, this Thanksgiving staple wasn’t served at the first meal by the Pilgrims. In fact, it wasn’t even invented until Campbell’s Soup put it in as a recipe in the mid-1950s!

Turkey towns!

Did you know there are four towns named Turkey in the U.S.? They are located in North Carolina, Texas, Louisiana and Arizona.

Presidential pardon?

Harry Truman is often given credit for being the president to first pardon a turkey. But Harry was no fool. When the National Turkey Federation delivered a big ol’ turkey to the White House, the Trumans had it for dinner – and we don’t mean as a guest. John Kennedy was the first one to not eat the gobbler. It’s reported that he said, “let’s let this one live.” Richard Nixon sent his turkey to a petting zoo and the first George Bush was the man who formalized pardoning the bird in 1989.

Presidential History

George Washington was the first president to celebrate Thanksgiving. But Thomas Jefferson was the first to ignore it. Honest Abe proclaimed it a holiday in 1863, adding “Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens.” He asked citizens, “with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience . . . fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty hand to heal the wounds of the nation.” FDR moved it up a week – and a lot of people had a lot to say about that. In 1942 Congress made it the fourth Thursday in November.

Hit the treadmill!

Know how many calories the average American will consume today? You may not want to know! The answer is 4,500!

Butterball overworked!

Did you know the good folks at Butterball have a hotline (you should have read it in the paper yesterday – just saying!). Each November and December they average more than 100,000 turkey-cooking questions By the way, the number 1-800-BUTTERBALL. Or, if you have an Alexa, you can say, Hey Alexa, ask Butterball . . .

Busy hiways and byways

Maybe it’s in spite of the pandemic, maybe not. But the experts are predicting that more than 54 million Americans are expected to be traveling during the T’giving holiday this year! That’s up about 5 percent from last year.

Jingle Turkey?

Did you know that Jingle Bells was originally written for Thanksgiving? It’s true. James Pierpont wrote the song entitled “One Horse Open Sleigh” specifically for Thanksgiving. But it became so popular for the Christmas season that the title was changed to Jingle Bells . . . and the rest, as they say, is history!

Macy’s Parade

The first one happened in 1924 – and one big difference between then and now, besides being televised in living color, was that live animals from the Central Park Zoo were used. Those creatures included bears, elephants and camels. We bet that made for interesting high stepping from some of the marching bands!