Miami’s best substitute Thanksgiving attractions

While not everyone can make it home to enjoy mom’s traditional turkey and uncle Ed and cousin Earl’s colorful commentary, Miami offers a mix of equally cheerful options. Here are some ways to shake off that homesickness and appreciate what your new home has to offer.


Caffe Abbracci Thanksgiving Dinner

Being away from home doesn’t mean you have to miss out on a real Thanksgiving dinner. Forget about the cold turkey sandwich you were planning on making and head over to Caffe Abbracci. This cozy Italian restaurant, whose name translates to “cafe hugs” in Italian, is nearby in Coral Gables and features have a special Thanksgiving menu. The menu includes a blend of classic and Italian-inspired dishes starting with either pumpkin ravioli or pumpkin and split pea soup. You can then move on to roast turkey with stuffing. For dessert, they offer homemade apple pie with ice cream and coffee. Plus, this three-course meal will only cost you $38.

This event will take place from 5 to 10:30 p.m. Thursday and costs $38 for adults. Caffe Abbracci is located at 318 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables. Call 305-441-0700 or visit for reservations and more details.


38th Annual WinterNational Thanksgiving Day Parade

Instead of watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on TV, you can venture out to Miami’s own WinterNational Thanksgiving Day Parade. Although it may require an early morning, it will pay off. The event features floats, live music and the usual parade fanfare. There’s nothing wrong with a little nostalgia during the holidays, so don’t be shy about grabbing some friends or heading out solo to watch the parade. If you don’t feel like standing, bring your own chair to watch from the street.

This event is free and will take place at 10 a.m. Thursday. The parade will travel along NE 125th Street from Fifth to 12th avenues in North Miami. Call 305-895-9840 for more details.


Baptist Health South Florida’s Turkey Trot at Tropical Park

If you want to burn off some calories before gorging on turkey and sides, look no further than the Turkey Trot at Tropical Park. You can sign up for either the 5K or 10K event. It’s an early morning event, but it’s well worth it for those who want to stay in shape and be part of something altruistic for the holiday. In addition to doing your body good, you can donate food to the homeless, providing them with Thanksgiving meals. Be sure to act fast because you’ll need to register in advance at the event’s website. If you’re not in the mood to exercise this holiday, you can sign up to volunteer instead.

This event takes place at 7:30 a.m. Thursday. Registration costs students under 18 $20 for the 5K and $25 for the 10K. Adults 19 or older are charged $25 for the 5K and $30 for the 10K. Tropical Park is located at 7900 SW 40 St., Miami. Call 305-278-8668 or visit for registration and more details.


Alcazaba Thanksgiving Bash 2012

The Coral Gables nightclub will hold its 24th annual Thanksgiving Eve party featuring Latin and freestyle music from disc jockeys Alex Gutierrez, Frank Banderas, Kiwi and Mario. With no cover and many drink specials – like $3 beers for guys and free mojitos for ladies – it’s a great way to start off your Thanksgiving break in the heart of the Gables.

This event is free and will take place from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. on Wednesday. Alcazaba is located at 50 Alhambra Plaza, Coral Gables. Call 305-323-1470 for more details.


Chalk Thanksgiving Bass

If you’re looking to party in Miami Beach on Thanksgiving Eve, stop by Chalk Ping Pong & Billiards Lounge. Chalk’s Thanksgiving Eve party will feature the sounds of DJ ICEY along with DJs Zone, Orlando, Merlyn, Shade, Masinc, Bebe and Soltek. If you want something different from your typical nightclub, Chalk offers a more laidback feel with pool tables, table tennis and board games with its international beer menu.  If you have your heart set on a game, you can reserve a table on their website. Chalk will be giving away free merchandise courtesy of Shady Teez. For guests who are 21 and older, the lounge will also be offering drink specials.

This event will take place at 3 p.m. Wednesday and costs $5. Chalk Ping Pong & Billiards Lounge is located at 1234 Washington Ave., Miami Beach. Visit for more details and reservations.