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Food & Drink

How to Have Friendsgiving in New Orleans

st ann fall color
Enjoy the fall decor on St. Ann Street (Photo: Paul Broussard)

Ah…Friendsgiving. It’s the relaxed, no-pressure alternative to hosting your in-laws for a buttoned-up Thanksgiving dinner complete with fancy glassware and your grandmother’s china. This is the time to get your crew together for a laid-back celebration filled with delicious food, drinks, and stimulating conversation. If you’re thinking of hosting Friendsgiving in New Orleans, we’ve got some ideas to make it extra special.

Enjoy the weather

While it might be chilly in other parts of the country, the weather is typically still warm and beautiful during late November in New Orleans. Enjoy the sun and crisp air by hosting your Friendsgiving outdoors. If you don’t want to host at home, New Orleans is full of parks and other outdoor spaces for gathering. Try gathering friends at The Fly on the Mississippi River in Audubon Park, City Park, Palmer Park, or Crescent Park. Setting up in the great outdoors allows for impromptu games of frisbee or football and allows guests to bring their furry friends along.

The Saints at home in the Superdome (Photo: Cheryl Gerber)

Watch some football

For many people, Thanksgiving, and by extension Friendsgiving, is synonymous to football. This year, the New Orleans Saints are playing in the Superdome on Sunday November 24 and they also have an away game on Thanksgiving day. If you and your crew can’t make it to the dome for a game, check out our list of great places to watch Saints games in New Orleans. Pro tip: you’ll want to dress in Saints style, so we recommend perusing some local boutiques for black-and-gold sequins and fleur-de-lis accessories.

The sweet potato po-boy from Killer PoBoys (Photo: Rebecca Todd)

Eat Thanksgiving food in a restaurant

Maybe you’re already planning to cook for family on Thanksgiving Day, or maybe you’re just not much of a chef. New Orleans has got you covered with some great restaurants to host your Friendsgiving. We made a list of restaurants where you can eat Thanksgiving food all year long, and if you’re hosting friends on the actual day, check out our list of restaurants open Thanksgiving Day in New Orleans. We are particular fans of the sweet potato po-boy at Killer Po-boys, any of the pies on this list, or a piping hot bowl of gumbo from pretty much anywhere!

Get Thanksgiving food to go

Hosting your New Orleans Friendsgiving at home? If you don’t feel like cooking or want to supplement your turkey with some tasty sides or pies, plenty of New Orleans grocers and bakeries can come to your aide. Louisiana grocery chains Rouses and Breaux Mart offer Cajun-style roast turkey plus sides like cornbread dressing, sweet potato casserole, and cranberry relish. New Orleans bakeries like Gracious Bakery and Willa Jean offer pies, bread, and other baked goods.

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