Thanksgiving Life Hacks Straight From The Fredericksburg Region.
Thanksgiving is right around the corner! Don’t let this day that’s supposed to be filled with good food, loved ones and gratitude be filled with anxiety. The Fredericksburg Region has all you need for a stellar Thanksgiving if you know where to look. That’s where we step in. Not only do we have a guide loaded with local sources, but tips to help you navigate your turkey.
Let’s talk hosting
If Joanna Gaines has taught us anything, it’s that home decorating is a personal and deeply fulfilling experience. Embrace your inner HGTV star and find your perfect Thanksgiving decor right here in the Fredericksburg Region!
We love tradition as much as the next person, but we also aren’t against getting the whole meal ( or even just half ) catered. Doing so dramatically reduces the day’s stress, leaves you plenty of time to relax with friends and family, and reduces clean up. No one looks forward to those Thanksgiving Day dishes!
Places you can get your whole or partial dinner catered
- Cracker Barrel (Order a hashbrown casserole for the next day’s breakfast. You’ll thank us later. )
- Honey Baked Ham
- Eileen’s Bakery – Full, partial, and turkey only available.
- The Olde Towne Butcher (except for turkeys.) We love that the Olde Towne Butcher delivers, now. Talk about making Thanksgiving Dinner easy!
Just the bird
As far a pre-cooked turkeys go you have to try Pifer Bros. Catering! They will smoke it to perfection, but you have to sign up via email first.
Walnut Hill Farm also has local free range turkeys for sale, as well as local pork and beef. Nothing is better than supporting a small farmer and eating an ethically raised and harvested turkey or ham, during Thanksgiving.
Serving up delicious barbeque and special smoked turkey for your dinner, McCoy’s BBQ is currently taking Thanksgiving pre-orders. They also offer sides.
If are going to try your hand at cooking a turkey, we have a few suggestions…
- Make sure you leave adequate time to thaw your turkey if it’s frozen. Keep in mind it takes 24 hours for every 4 lbs of turkey to fully defrost. Do NOT thaw it at room temperature. We know it’s tempting, but you have to thaw your turkey in the refrigerator.
- Do not trust the popper that came with your turkey. Buy a meat thermometer.
- Remember to take the gibbet bag and neck out of the turkey before cooking.
- Remember to let your turkey rest before carving. That helps to ensure that the juices settle back into the meat, instead of running all over your cutting board.
One of the most important parts of prepping your turkey is choosing the right spices. You can always go to your favorite grocery store. If you want to step up your game this year check out Wittingham’s Kitchen, HomeGoods or WorldMarket for gear and spices.
Fact: Desserts is stressed spelled backwards
One thing to 100% take off your to-do list is dessert. Paul’s Bakery, Itavie, Braehead Farm Market, and Eileen’s Bakery have you covered for fresh and local. Make sure to call ahead, though. There is often a waitlist for their highly in demand baked goods.
What Happens If You Ruin Everything?
So the worst of the worst has happened. Nothing is edible. The dog got a hold of the turkey. You tripped and the bird went flying into the next room, leaving a giant grease spot on the wall and on the floor. Guys, it happens and it’s fine! Have a good laugh (or cry if you need to ), call for a reservation, and head straight to…
- Amy Café’
- The Alpine Chef
- Brock’s Riverside Grill
- Courtyard by Marriott – Doing a buffet
- Cracker Barrel
- Bob Evans
- Buffalo Wild Wings
- TGI Fridays
Please note, there doesn’t need to be a disaster in order to enjoy Thanksgiving out at a restaurant. We love the idea of a mess-free, hassle-free meal out with loved ones at a great spot.
What do we do after we eat?
Worried about there being an awkward lull after the meal has passed? Obvious answers are to watch football or play games. Those are nice suggestions, but let’s all acknowledge that not everyone cares about football or likes playing games. So what then? A change of scenery is always nice! While hordes are out shopping for deals head on over to…
- The Movies – Regal Fredericksburg, Paragon Village 12, and Marquee Cinemas are all great choices.
- Cavalier Skating
- Funland – Check out their latest updates!
- SkyZone – Jump away all those extra calories.
Looking for a hostess gift?
We’ve been talking a lot about hosting, but what if you’re not the host?? Don’t show up empty handed. Schedule in time to pick up a bottle of local wine ( you can find several at Olde Virginia Gourmet & Gifts, City Vino or any of our local wineries ). We suggest red wine to go with the turkey. Flowers are always a win, too! You can pick up a bouquet at Finishing Touch Florist or Walker’s Flowers & More
You will never go wrong showing up with a pie or other delicious baked good from Itavie, Paul’s Bakery, Brahead Farm Market, or Eileens! Breahead also offers freshly made jam, pickles, icecream and eggs laid right on the farm which would make such a fun and unique gift.
The Icing in Stafford also has the most beautiful holiday cakes. Check them out and put in an order today!