Each year, the Saturday before Thanksgiving, Poplar Spring Farm Animal Sanctuary teams up with Compassion Over Killing to host on one of the most amazing and compassionate events I have ever been to, Thanksgiving WITH the Turkeys! Thanksgiving with the Turkeys is a event where the rescued turkeys are celebrated and are the guest of honer while compassionate people like you and I enjoy a vegan pot luck lunch!
The four-hour event starts at noon with everyone gathering around the grounds and mingling with the rescued animals and the wonderful folks who care for them. This was both Jason and my first time to an animal sanctuary and I really must say, it was an amazing experience. Each animal is known by name and has an amazing story about how they came to Poplars Springs. Ziona, one of the kinds ladies who works on the farm spent quite a lot of time introducing us to each and every Hen, Rooster, Peacock and Turkey. While it is very sad to hear the stories of how these animals made it to Poplar Springs, it is so wonderful to know that they are safe there, and being cared for in the best way possible.
Around 1:00pm, the staff gathers everyone around the area where the turkeys are wondering and they say a few words about the event. They introduce everyone formally to the seven rescued turkeys and then we get to watch them enjoy a bountiful meal of all their favorite treats: watermelon, cantaloupe, grapes, corn, kale and more.
Once the turkeys are through enjoying their meal, the crowd lines up to start enjoying theirs. This year there were four 50 foot tables covered in homemade vegan entrees and another 60 foot table covered with vegan desserts. Jason and I piled out plates high and found a spot to sit and enjoy. It is open seating so you can find some new like-minded friends to talk to while you eat.
After lunch, Jason and I made our way over to visit with the pigs and hear some more triumphant stories of how these beautiful animals arrived at the sanctuary. Bobbie, the sleeping beauty in the picture with me, was one of favorite new friends. Pigs LOVE affection whether they are awake or asleep. We rubbed Bobbie’s belly and you could just see the look of pure bliss on his little sleeping face. We also spent some time with the goats before we made our way home. There was one goat in particular that we fell in love with, his name was Murray and he was a sweetie.
The event goes from 12pm – 4pm and at 3pm guests are welcome to feed the pumpkins to the pigs. We did not stay through the whole event since Poplar Springs is about an hour away from home for us, but we did have an amazing time while we were there. This event will truly change you and how you interact with animals forever. It touched both Jason and I so much that we are planning to return for many years to come. We would even like to get back out to the sanctuary and volunteer for a day or two.
I hope that you will keep this event in mind next year as you and your family prepare for a compassionate Holiday season. It is truly a unique and heart warming experience that I think everyone should have.
Happy Thanksgiving to each and everyone of you and may we all be thankful for places like Poplar Springs who fight to bring and end to animal cruelty, one animal at a time.