Gift Guides, Events and Holiday Cheer

Celebrating Thanksgiving in Nontraditional Ways

From eating out to tailgating to camping for Black Friday, North Texans serve up own holiday traditions

By Omar Villafranca
|  Thursday, Nov 24, 2011  |  Updated 7:30 PM CDT
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For thousands of North Texans, Thanksgiving has turned into a new adventure.

Omar Villafranca, NBC 5 News

For thousands of North Texans, Thanksgiving has turned into a new adventure.

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Thanksgiving turkey and falling asleep while watching football? So 2010.

For thousands of North Texans, the holiday has turned into a new adventure.

"It's kind of like family. We're used to the waiters; the waiters are used to us," said J. Maisel while eating her Thanksgiving meal with her husband at Sol Irlanda's in downtown Dallas.

"We're cooking at home right now to have the traditional dinner tomorrow with two of our five kids and their five children," she said.

Maisel said she won't eat a nibble of turkey on Thursday.

"Chile rellenos and El Jefe burrito," she said with a grin.

Planning for Black Friday shopping has also cut into the traditional Thanksgiving meal.

More than a dozen shoppers camped out in tents outside of Best Buy in North Dallas had no plans to eat turkey on Thursday.

"Some chicken sandwiches; I know that's not tradition, but that's what up. That's all we have for today," said Jeremiah DeLeon of Dallas.

He was waiting in line for a chance at a $200 TV.

Some football fans combined the holiday tradition of turkey and football in Arlington.

"All of us have been tailgating for about 20 years together, and we just carried it over from Texas Stadium," Sandra Gipson said.

She and as many as 25 of her family members ate their Thanksgiving feast at a massive tailgate party just outside Cowboys Stadium.

Once they finished their meal, the group headed to the seats to watch the game -- passing on a post-turkey nap.

"It's a lot easier when you're not on a couch watching the game, when you're sitting in the seat and everyone's screaming," John Young said.

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