Do Latinos Celebrate Thanksgiving in the US?

Thanksgiving Day, is an annual national holiday in the United States and Canada that celebrates the harvest and other blessings of the past year. In 1621, the Plymouth colonists and the Wampanoag shared an autumn harvest feast that is acknowledged today as one of the first Thanksgiving celebrations in the colonies. But, how US Hispanic and Latinos celebrate it?

Día de Acción de Gracias


According to Spanish Academy, “Thanksgiving Day is known as Día de Acción de Gracias or Día de Dar Gracias. The second translation is more precise as “Thanks-giving” literally means dar gracias. However, the first translation is the most widely used, and it would literally translate as “Action of Thanks Day.”

Most Latin American people discover Día de Acción de Gracias when coming into contact with the cultures of the United States and Canada. In my case, the first time I heard of this celebration was when I was still a little kid and found out that my favorite (American) football team, the Dallas Cowboys, weren’t playing on Sunday as always, but on a Thursday because of a holiday there.

Obviously, as this contact and interaction with the cultures of North America grows, traditions originally unheard of to Latinos are integrated into their customs with characteristic Latin style.”


Marketing Perspective 

Latinos don’t celebrate Thanksgiving in Latin America, however, in U.S, they’ve been showed a special connection to its meaning of being thankful, and they appreciate sharing in its festivities. In fact, according to Univision, 76% of Latinos often celebrate U.S. holidays, and 86 percent of Latinos feel it is natural to live and act in ways that are typical of U.S. American culture, according to a Simmons Spring 2011 survey. From the marketing perspective, this is a significant amount of money on foods and beverages. 

Moreover, in a comScore study, 35% of Hispanics recalled products that they saw advertised, versus 31 percent of non-Hispanics. Thirty one percent of Latinos also enjoyed watching ads, compared with only 19 percent of non-Hispanics, said the same source of Univision. In other words, it is a good occasion to launch certain advertising campaigns.  

In any case, don’t get us wrong. For us, Thanksgiving is  not just food & beverages that makes special this day. It is family, and the moment to thanks for all the blessings.