12 Can’t-Miss Thanksgiving Week Events

There’s much more than the turkey feast awaiting expats and visitors to Buffalo leading up to Thanksgiving and beyond. Events that Buffalonians associate with Thanksgiving Before and after the big meal, we’ve highlighted several ways to enjoy your holiday stay in Buffalo this year:

Photo by Bill Wippert

Wednesday, November 22nd

Buffalo Sabres vs. Minnesota Wild:
Don your best blue and gold apparel, hop on the subway downtown toward Key Bank Center and team up with thousands of screaming hockey fans as the Buffalo Sabres take on the Minnesota Wild for raucous, lamp-lighting fun.

Joyeux Noel at Wrafterbuilt:
Furniture, food and ferns. It’s all for sale at Wrafterbuilt’s new showroom on Elmwood Avenue in Allentown. Some of Buffalo’s most premier new-wave artisans will be set up and making your pre-Thanksgiving shopping experience the hippest thing you’ve ever seen.


YMCA Turkey Trot

Thanksgiving! Thursday,  November 23rd

The Turkey Trot:
While availaibilty to run in the race sold out weeks ago, the Turkey Trot is still very much a spectator-friendly event. Set your alarm for the early morning on Thanksgiving Day to witness thousands of runners proactively burn off some calories before the big feast. Watch as Superman, Cinderella, sprinting canoers and 14,000 others dash through the beautiful streets of Buffalo as they partake in this Thanksgiving tradition. We recommend getting a vantage point at the 198 footbridge or Niagara Square.

Shopping along Elmwood Avenue

Shopping along Elmwood Avenue

Friday, November 24th

Alternative Black Friday in the Elmwood Village:
Enjoy a stress free day away from the big box stores at the always unique Elmwood Village boutiques and shops. Their Alternative Black Friday event is a great way to enjoy holiday shopping season and it’s trimmings in a charming atmosphere. You’ll also find many excellent restaurants in the Village to eat, grab a coffee, and recharge for the rest of the day!

Poinsettia Show:
Nature’s festive beauty will be in bloom at the Buffalo & Erie County Botanical Gardens for their 2017 Poinsettia Show. Shades of red, floral scents and holiday music will fill the warm air of the newly-renovated conservatory.

Fairgrounds Festival of Lights:
Walk the illuminated paths of a 10,000 square foot winter wonderland at the Fairgrounds Festival of Lights. Bring the little ones for a tour of the North Pole and a visit to the residence of Mr. and Mrs. Claus. Stick around and chill out for the frozen masterpieces created during the Great Lakes International Ice Carving competition.

Train Day!:
All aboard for Train Day! at the Buffalo History Museum. Locomotive lovers will rejoice at 1900s replica trains running on over 200 feet of track along with live music, train-themed crafts and a letters to Santa train delivery.

Disco 2009 Parisi 225

World’s Largest Disco

Saturday, November 25th

Small Business Saturday:
SBS kicks the local shopping scene into high gear. Along with fashionable boutiques and stores lining Elmwood, Hertel and our other great shopping districts, several locations will be hosting pop-up markets highlighting Buffalo’s creative hometown makers.
Stop by  Makers + Shakers: A Boozy Artisan Market at Hotel @ The Lafayette, Buffalo Place’s Market Arcade Market, the Queen City Pop-Up, Tommyrotter Distillery’s Market and The Foundry’s small biz market.

Out of Sight! Art of the Senses:
Fan favorite works have returned to the Albright-Knox Art Gallery for the holidays. Out of Sight! Art of the Senses showcases larger than life lawn furniture, the famous, selfie-inspiring Mirrored Room and encourages you to appreciate art using all five senses.

The World’s Largest Disco:
As much a part of the Thanksgiving holiday as turkey, the World’s Largest Disco is a celebration of 70s fashion, culture and, of course, music. Join celebrities and thousands of disco divas for a night of shaking your groove thing.


Neglia Ballet Artists & Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra’s The Nutcracker

Sunday, November 26th

The Nutcracker at Shea’s:
Be whisked away to an elegant experience at Shea’s Performing Arts Center as Neglia Ballet Artists and the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra present The Nutcracker, live on stage for a magnificent annual performance.

The Ice at Canalside (weather dependent):
Lace up your skates as Canalside opens the ice for the first skating of the winter season. Here you’ll find curling, skating and even the Buffalo-born ice bikes. If things get a bit too chilly, you can always warm up over a cup of hot cocoa in the Canalside pavilion.