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Best DFW Thanksgiving Celebrations For Families

Thanksgiving Float
Photo by Hiroko Masuike/Getty Images

Thanksgiving in the Dallas-Fort Worth area was made for families with everything from turkey trots to football. Whether you're looking to celebrate everything, right down to the meal, out of the house or just want to spend the morning giving back, make this Thanksgiving one the whole family will talk about for years to come.

Dallas YMCA Turkey Trot

Dallas City Hall
1500 Marilla St.
Dallas, TX 75201
(214) 954-0500
www.thetrot.orgDate: Nov. 22 –9 a.m.
Price: $30 timed participants/$25 untimed participants/$15 Trot Tot ages 6 and youngerCombining an 8K run and a 5K Fun Run/Walk, this annual event is in its 45th year at Dallas City Hall. Bring the whole family and meet some new friends to support the Dallas YMCA. Toddlers, infants and strollers are welcome. In 2011, 36,280 people participated, making this event one of the largest such events in the country.
Fort Worth YMCA Turkey Trot
Corner of Camp Bowie Boulevard and Westridge
Fort Worth, TX 76116
(817) 244-4544
www.fwtrot.orgDate: Nov. 22
Price: $25 to $35 adults/$19 to $35 kidsFort Worth has its own turkey trot with three events including a kid-friendly 1K, a 5K and a 10K. Start times vary between 8 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. Each route has its own course beginning at Camp Bowie Boulevard and ending at Sunset. Proceeds benefit the Westside YMCA, which offers youth programs and fitness options to families around the area.

Related: Family Guide to Thanksgiving Volunteering.

Thanksgiving Ballroom Brunch at the Gaylord Texan
1501 Gaylord Trail
Grapevine, TX 76051
(817) 778-2000 Nov. 22 – 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Price: $68 adults/$27 children ages 4 to 12/free for children ages 3 and youngerThe Gaylord Texan is becoming another family filled holiday attraction in Dallas Fort Worth. Families may enjoy a special Thanksgiving Ballroom Brunch to coincide with their Dreamworks Merry Madagascar-inspired ICE! attraction. Enjoy live entertainment, wonderful brunch dishes and ice sculptures. For an additional charge that is discounted from the standalone price for those that purchase the brunch, the ICE! exhibit features the Dreamworks characters in Merry Madagascar with an interactive world of ice sculptures and 20-foot -tall ice slides.

Related: Great Exercises for Burning Holiday Calories

Chesapeake Energy Parade of Lights
Sundance Square

201 Main St.
Fort Worth, TX 76102
(817) 336-2787 
www.fortworthparadeoflights.orgDate: Nov. 22 – 6 p.m.
Price: free

In its 30 year, this event will include 100 illuminated entries and floats along with 500,000 lights to kickoff the Christmas season with the lighting of the Sundance Square Christmas tree. The extended route runs from Belknap to Commerce Street, around 9th to Houston Street and up Weatherford. The theme this year is "The Wonder of it All!"
Gift of Lights at the Texas Motor Speedway
3545 Lone Star Circle
Fort Worth, TX 76177
(704) 367-5363
www.texasgiftoflights.comHours: Nov. 21 to Jan. 6 Sun to Thurs – 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.; Fri and Sat – 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Price: $20 per car on weekend/$15 per car other days.This new North Texas tradition is now a part of the holiday season, beginning the day before Thanksgiving. Featuring more than 2 million lights displayed across nearly two miles at Texas Motor Speedway's Gate 8 entrance this event opens from Nov. 21 through Jan. 6, 2013. There will be more than 600 unique and exciting holiday displays in one of the country's most popular sports venues.
Dallas Cowboys vs Washington Redskins
Cowboys Stadium
One Legends Way
Arlington, TX 76011
(817) 892-4161 Nov. 22 – 3:15 pm
Price: $149 to $500The Dallas Cowboys are a Thanksgiving tradition, and not just for football. Fans line up to deep fry their turkeys in this annual tailgate tradition. Companies such as Cowboys Sports Tours will provide tailgating-only packages that begin at $55, which includes an all-you-can-eat-and-drink buffet along with raffle prizes, alumni player autographs, and merchandise available for sale. This game also is a kickoff for the Salvation Army's annual kettle drive.

Related: Football 'N Turkey: 10 Cowboys Thanksgiving Memories

Heather Buen is a social media and communications consultant as well as a mother of three that has lived in the Dallas-Fort Worth area for over ten years. She covers all things family and has experience as both a writer and single mom. Her work can be found at

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