Counting your blessings is as easy as 1-2-3
When was the last time you asked yourself, “What am I thankful for?” It’s easy to get lost in the hustle and bustle of deadlines, completing to-do lists, taking the kids to school and all of the extra activities, that sometimes taking a minute to stop and give thanks is not only an afterthought, but not even on the radar of what needs to be done in the day. Well today that is going to change.
With Thanksgiving right around the corner and the kick-start of the busy holiday season, this time of the year can bring a gamut of emotions. And if the reminder that the holidays are just about upon us brings your level of anxiety up, keep reading.
Research shows that expressing gratitude can lift your spirits and release tension, worry, and fear and that taking a vacation can extend your life. So what does this have to do with asking yourself, “What am I thankful for?” Florida’s Space Coast provides the perfect setting to take a breather, kick back and relax, and reflect on what you are grateful for and what better time than Thanksgiving.
Here are our top 4 reasons why Thanksgiving on the Space Coast is the best:
1. Enjoy Family Time
What’s better than getting away with your family and enjoying each other’s company? Thanksgiving time is one of the few opportunities where members of your family that are scattered all over can come together and the Space Coast is a great place to gather because there is something for everyone to enjoy. Here are a few family-friendly things to do:
- Space Coast Lightfest: Enjoy this drive-through event located in Wickham Park where more than 3-million holiday lights are on display. This event kicks off November 19 through New Year’s Day.
- Light Up Viera: Kick off the holiday season with a parade and fireworks at Viera High School. Mark your calendars for November 24 and get there early to save your spot along the parade route.
- Painting with a Twist: Channel your inner Picasso with a family night at Painting with a Twist. An artist with step-by-step instructions will lead you, so you can create your own work of art that you can take home with you. Two locations: Cocoa Village and Downtown Melbourne.
- A Christmas Story – The Musical: Experience the classic Christmas movie live in this musical that takes you on the quest for the Holy Grail of Christmas gifts – the official Red Ryder BB Gun - with 9-year-old Ralphie Parker. Select days starting November 16 – December 2 at the Cocoa Village Playhouse.
- It’s a Wonderful Life – The Musical: Based on the beloved film, this musical follows George Bailey’s life, from childhood to midlife disappointments and beyond, as he journeys to discover if his life had any meaning at all. Select days starting November 23 – December 16 at the Emma Parrish Theater at the Titusville Playhouse.
2. Guilt-Free Indulgence
There’s nothing like eating really good food (and a lot of it) and sharing it with the ones you love. And those Thanksgiving leftovers are even better a second, third and even fourth time around, but having some options to be able to burn off all those mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie, just so you can make room for more, is easy to find if you’re here on the Space Coast. So pack your running shoes and plan to make room for the abundance of food you will be consuming. Plus, you’ll be supporting good causes.
- Space Coast Turkey Trot: Taking place in Melbourne on Thanksgiving morning, this race benefits the West Shore Parent Teacher Association.
- Cocoa Beach Turkey Trot: This annual Thanksgiving morning tradition, this race benefits the Cocoa Beach Jr/Sr High School Cross-Country and Track teams and the Kiwanis Foundation Scholarships.
- Space Coast Half Marathon & Marathon: This annual Thanksgiving weekend race blasts off with the “Big Bang: Next Generation” Series event celebrating Human Space Exploration with the 2018 Project Mercury half and full marathon races. Enjoy a historic and scenic course as you weave your way through the Downtown Cocoa Village area.
3. Shop ‘Til You Drop
Calling all you shoppers and bargain hunters! Thanksgiving brings out the sleeping shopping strategists that have been hibernating all year to shop for all the holiday deals. And there are plenty of stores all along the Space Coast that will help you find the perfect gifts and the best deals. But if you are looking for more unique and creative gifts or prefer a more casual, laid-back shopping experience where you can peruse local art while listening to live, festive music coupled with a glass of your drink of choice, then check out some of these shopping events happening this Thanksgiving.
- Shop Small Sip & Stroll: Cocoa Village annual sip and stroll event is a favorite among both locals and frequent visitors. Sample wines and other treats as you find those one-of-a-kind gifts for everyone on your list.
- Cocoa Beach Art Show: Engage all your senses as you enjoy a festival full of diverse art, music, and food with live demonstrations from artists all over the country. Take home gifts and other keepsakes from this three-day festival.
4. Start New Traditions
Melanie White says it best, “Thanksgiving – when the people who are the most thankful are the ones who didn’t have to cook.” So this year, start a new tradition by taking your Thanksgiving to the open seas by sailing from Port Canaveral. Home to four major cruise lines, you can enjoy being served a feast of good food as you throw your cares to the wind. Check out one of the following cruise lines to start planning: Disney, Royal Caribbean, Carnival and Norwegian.
Not interested in a cruise, but the idea of not having to prepare a Thanksgiving dinner peaks your interest, check out the following locations that are offering traditional fare to fine dining where you get to be served but on the mainland.
- DoubleTree Suites by Hilton | Melbourne Beach | (321) 723-4222 x0
- Hilton | Melbourne Beach Oceanfront | (321) 777-5000 x5186
- Matt’s Casbah | Melbourne | (321) 574-1099
- Hilton Rialto | Melbourne | (321) 768-0200
- Chart House | Melbourne | (321) 729-6558
- Hilton Cocoa Beach | Cocoa Beach | (321) 799-0003
Kick start your attitude of gratitude with planning to spend your Thanksgiving here on the Space Coast. Need help planning? No problem. Check out the links below to map out your trip and find places that are hosting Thanksgiving.