Good Tuesday morning.
First and foremost — Let me wish each reader a very happy Thanksgiving. All of us who work to produce Sunburn are enormously grateful for your readership.
From Michelle, Ella and I — We try and find gratitude in every day but welcome the extra attention on the blessings Thanksgiving brings. We are forever thankful for this life together, for God’s grace, for the health of our family, and for the blessings of friendship that enrich our lives. As you look around at your loved ones at your Thanksgiving table, please know that you will be included in our prayers of gratitude at our Thanksgiving table.
Programming note — Sunburn will be off Wednesday, Thursday and Friday to celebrate the holiday with our families. We’ll see you bright and early next Monday.
Here are some other Thanksgiving items on my radar:
— Turkey prices down, but Thanksgiving’ll still cost ‘ya: With slowing inflation, turkey prices this year are dropping, but Thanksgiving dinner is still expected to be more expensive this year than last. A roundup of prices from Bloomberg offers some advice for those looking to gorge without hitting the wallet too hard. For example, the price of fresh cranberries is down, but canned cranberries are way up — so making from scratch should save some dough. Likewise, romaine lettuce is down, while canned green beans are up, meaning a salad might take some of the edge off your Thanksgiving dinner bill.
— Canned or fresh? How each state prefers their cranberry sauce: Floridians are four times more likely to buy canned cranberry sauce than to make their own from fresh cranberries, according to Instacart data compiled by Axios. The Sunshine State is one of about half in the nation to prefer canned sauce to fresh. Most of the Southeastern U.S. prefers canned, along with most of the Northeastern U.S., Arizona, Nevada and Alaska. Mississippi is the state with the most canned cranberry lovers — More than 22% used the canned Thanksgiving fixin. Nearly 71% of Iowans, conversely, prefer fresh-made cranberry sauce and states where fresh is preferred to so more extensively than in states with a canned preference, with most surpassing 21% who make their own cranberry sauce or relish.
— Wet vs. dry brine, the great debate: Wet brining a turkey involves submerging the bird in a bath of water, salt and aromatics, such as bay leaves and garlic, and refrigerating for 4-6 hours. The result is juicier, more tender meat. But drawbacks include a possible mess — without proper caution, the water can spill all over — and the added moisture is mostly just water, meaning the meat’s natural flavor can be dulled. A dry brine includes salting the outside of the turkey. The process draws the turkey’s natural juices to the surface, mixes with the salt, and then reabsorbs the juices back into the meat, thus brining it in its own juices. Dry brine fans argue the method allows for a juicier bird without the flavor loss, and avoids the possible mess associated with wet brine. Still, others argue neither are necessary, and a non-brined turkey allows the natural flavors to shine. But brining gives the amateur cook a buffer if they leave the turkey in the oven a touch too long. Read more about the pros and cons in this Washington Post explainer.
— Spice up your Thanksgiving spread: People call it turkey day for a reason — Thanksgiving menus tend to have a lot of repetition, from the main protein to staples like mashed potatoes and stuffing. But The New York Times notes there are ways to liven up the table for a crunchier, brighter, fresher spread. The piece includes five suggestions, including adding a sweet and sour profile, a bit of crunch with fresh veggies, getting herbaceous with a bright turkey salsa verde drizzle, adding spice with things like a cilantro-date chutney, and adding some crunch with a fried shallot topping. The additions can transform even the most ordinary Thanksgiving menu from blah to wow, and most can be offered as optional add-ons while still adding a burst of color and excitement to the table without bombarding the Thanksgiving purist with flavors they don’t think belong.
— Do your relish tray like a pro: If you’re like any number of Thanksgiving hosts running behind to meet that dinner deadline, a good relish tray can save the day, satiating hungry guests while you get those last-minute details into the main course (and make sure they’re hot). But why throw some veggies, crackers, cheese, and olives onto a plate willy-nilly when you can get some easy tips from five-star chefs, as compiled by The Wall Street Journal? Try combining both marinated and raw fermented elements, recommends Santa Monica chef Matthew Schaler. That can be as simple as a briny pickle. Amped-up deviled eggs highlight upper Midwest chef Shaina Robbins Papach and husband Joe Papach’s Harvey House relish tray, including a trout roe topping. The duo also prepares a whipped ranch mousse in lieu of supermarket dressing. New York chef Nate Adler suggests mixing and matching, including turmeric-pickled cauliflower, pickled onions, fried cumin-pickled beets, and a smoked whitefish salad.
— Wine pair like a boss: We’re all a little rusty from last year’s lonely COVID-19 Thanksgiving, and let’s face it, sometimes family dynamics call for booze. So, make sure your alcoholic drink offerings play up the menu while still making sure wine choices are versatile. The New York Times has plenty of tips for choosing the best crowd-pleasers and some pitfalls to avoid. Don’t, the piece notes, go for overly tannic wines. That means avoiding young reds that still need to age. Too many tannins aren’t overtly bad, but they can have a fatiguing effect. Also, avoid oaky flavor profiles. As popular as oaky wines are, they can clash with many Thanksgiving foods. Also, avoid high-alcohol wines (nothing gets your crazy uncle even more vocal at the dinner table than a solid buzz) and transgressive wines that might confuse non-connoisseur guests. Do choose lively wines, those with a lot of names — such as “fresh,” “lithe,” and “energetic” — to describe them.
— Crickets in your crust? Ever wonder what Thanksgiving dinner will look like in a hotter, dryer world? With climate change impacting everything from crops to livestock, the traditional spread might need some tweaks, and not all of it sounds very appetizing. The Washington Post analyzed changes that might be forced due to changing climates and it includes the possibility of swapping turkey for wild boar; kelp for lettuce in your salad; and, yes, adding crickets to pie crust to compensate for a lack of wheat on farms. Read more here.
— SITUATIONAL AWARENESS —
—@domdececco: White House identifies the 2 turkeys President (Joe) Biden will pardon before Thanksgiving Day. James Comer immediately subpoenaed them to appear before the Oversight Committee.
—@GovGoneWild: When you lose the Cardi B vote you’re toast.
Grateful to my team, @FarmShareFL, @TeamAlexRizo, @DannyEspinoD5, Mayor Maria Mitchell and the @MiamiSpringsFL City Council, and all of the incredible volunteers that helped distribute chicken, bread and canned foods to over 500 families in our community. #FightingforFLFamilies pic.twitter.com/mSqjAK13LF
— Sen. Bryan Ávila (@BryanAvilaFL) November 20, 2023
Joined the dedicated staff of @FL_Corrections today to get a first hand look at the good work they are doing at Zephyrhills Correctional Institution.
I will always be relentless in supporting those who serve. We need to make sure they have the time, tools, and training necessary… pic.twitter.com/DzWcC5fATb
— Jay Collins (@JayCollinsFL) November 20, 2023
—@IraSchoffel: Mike Norvell says most coaches in the ACC have reached out or texted him expressing their sympathy following Jordan Travis’ injury.
— DAYS UNTIL —
Ridley Scott’s ‘Napoleon’ premieres — 1; 2023 Florida Transportation, Growth & Infrastructure Solution Summit — 1; ‘Squid Game: The Challenge’ premieres — 1; Disney’s Bob Iger holds an end-of-the-year town hall — 7; Florida TaxWatch’s Annual Meeting begins — 9; Florida TaxWatch’s 2023 Government Productivity Awards Ceremony — 15; in-person sports betting begins at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa — 17; 2023 Florida Chamber Annual Insurance Summit — 23; Zack Snyder’s ‘Rebel Moon’ premieres — 31; Michael Mann’s ‘Ferrari’ premieres — 34; Matt Dixon’s ‘Swamp Monsters: (Donald) Trump vs. (Gov. Ron) DeSantis ― the Greatest Show on Earth (or at Least in Florida)’ released — 49; 2024 Florida Chamber Legislative Fly-In and reception — 49; Florida’s 2024 Regular Session begins — 49; 2024 Primetime Emmy Awards — 55; Florida TaxWatch’s State of the Taxpayer Dinner — 56; House District 35 Special Election — 56; New Hampshire Primary — 63; Red Dog Blue Dog 2024 — 64; South Carolina Democratic Primary — 74; New Hampshire and Nevada Democratic Primaries — 77; South Carolina GOP holds first-in-the-South Primary — 95; Michigan Democratic Primary — 97; Trump’s D.C. trial on charges related to trying to reverse his 2020 Election loss — 103; Super Tuesday — 104; ‘A Quiet Place: Day One’ premieres — 107; 2024 Oscars — 111; Georgia Democratic Primary — 112; ‘Dune: Part Two’ premieres — 116; 2024 Leadership Conference on Safety, Health & Sustainability — 171; ‘Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes’ premieres — 180; Republican National Convention begins — 234; New ‘Alien’ premieres — 238; ‘Captain America: Brave New World’ premieres — 247; Opening Ceremony of the 2024 Olympic Games — 248; Georgia Tech to face Florida State in 2024 opener in Dublin — 278; Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour stops in Miami — 322; 2024 Florida Chamber Annual Meeting & Future of Florida Forum — 334; Las Vegas Grand Prix — 366; ‘Thunderbolts’ premieres — 395; ‘Blade’ reboot premieres — 451; ‘Fantastic Four’ reboot premieres — 530; ‘Moana’ premieres — 586; ‘Avatar 3’ premieres — 760; ‘Avengers: The Kang Dynasty’ premieres — 891; Untitled ‘Star Wars’ movie premieres — 914; Another untitled ‘Star Wars’ movie premieres — 1,127; ‘Avengers: Secret Wars’ premieres — 1,266; ‘Avatar 4’ premieres — 2,222; ‘Avatar 5’ premieres — 2,585.
— THANKFUL —
Sunburn readers share what they are grateful for this year:
U.S. Sen. Rick Scott — Today and every day, I’m thankful for my beautiful wife, Ann, our daughters and our seven wonderful grandchildren. I’m grateful to live in the greatest nation in the world, where everyone has the freedom and opportunity to achieve the American dream. I’m also thankful to Florida’s families, who have trusted me to represent and fight for them every day in the United States Senate. I’d like to wish all Floridians a very happy Thanksgiving!
U.S. Rep. Aaron Bean — This Thanksgiving, Abby and I are thankful for our family, the opportunity to serve others by representing Northeast Florida in Congress and the blessing of living in the USA.
U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan — As we prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving this week, I am especially thankful for the tens of thousands of U.S. troops deployed around the world who cannot be home with their family and loved ones this holiday season. It is because of their incredible and selfless sacrifice that we are able to enjoy our many freedoms and way of life that we cherish as Americans. I am also extremely thankful for our police officers and first responders here at home who put it all on the line to keep our communities safe. Finally, I am humbled and honored to represent such an amazing region in southwest Florida that is home to more than 70,000 brave veterans who served our country with distinction.
U.S. Rep. Kat Cammack — This Thanksgiving I’m thankful for my family, the United States, our first responders, service members, veterans, my team and their families, and our farmers and ranchers. Happy Thanksgiving to everyone in FL-03 and across the Sunshine State.
U.S. Rep. Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick — This Thanksgiving, I am grateful for my family, friends, colleagues, and for the privilege of representing each and every constituent within Florida’s 20th Congressional District. I am honored to serve as their Representative in Congress.
U.S. Rep. Byron Donalds — I’m thankful for my family. It’s been a very intense year, but the family is doing well. That is what I am thankful for.
U.S. Rep. Lois Frankel — As I sit down to celebrate Thanksgiving, I’m thankful for my good friends and family.
U.S. Rep. Brian Mast — I’m thankful for my God who is constantly there for me, even though I don’t deserve it. I am thankful for my country which has learned to welcome veterans home after their service, after their despicable treatment of Vietnam veterans. I am thankful for my family, who make every sacrifice worth it, and for my combat family whom I would do anything for and who I know would do anything for me. And I’m thankful for the opportunity that America provides to everyone, every day, to make each day better than the last.
U.S. Rep. Bill Posey — On Thanksgiving, Katie and I take time to reflect on our family and how grateful we are for the opportunity to serve others in our community. As Americans, it’s important to recognize that we are blessed to have freedom and liberty and to show our gratitude for the men and women in uniform who have made tremendous sacrifices to defend and preserve it.
U.S. Rep. Daniel Webster — Thanksgiving has always been a favorite in my family because it reminds us of how blessed we are. Like the first Thanksgiving, this year has included several challenges, but we still have much to be thankful for as Americans. Sandy and I are blessed to spend time with our entire family and for the news of our 24th grandchild on the way. We are particularly thankful for the men and women of our Armed Forces who are sacrificing to protect our rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson — This year, I am grateful for the resilience and triumphs of our young boys in the 5000 Role Models of Excellence Program. These boys, many now young men, are the living testament to the program’s success after 30 years of shaping lives and the remarkable journey of those who may not have reached manhood without this program and its dedicated mentors. Through our boys’ survival and acceleration, we’ve successfully interrupted the school-to-prison pipeline and transformed the futures of the next generation of Black men. I realize I will always be a part of them, and they will always be a part of me, and for that, I’m thankful. I am also thankful for the resilient South Florida community we’ve been able to create at home. This year, South Florida has weathered some rough patches, from natural weather disasters to global events that have tested our strength. But each and every time, we come together as a community to support one another, and that is truly beautiful.
Attorney General Ashley Moody — I’m grateful every year for those who serve and protect us — but during these uncertain times, I’m especially thankful for our wonderful law enforcement heroes who protect our communities and for the brave men and women who stand ready to defend our country. May God bless Florida and the U.S.A.
CFO Jimmy Patronis — This Thanksgiving I’m giving thanks for those first responders who are watching over our communities to make sure people are safe. While families will be enjoying great cooking and time with one another, our law enforcement, our firefighters, our EMS teams, and, of course, those in the military will be responding to crises all across the country. We can’t ever forget these heroes who serve 24/7, 365 days a year. God bless them!
Agriculture Commissioner Wilton Simpson — Food. Family. Friends. It’s the big three for Thanksgiving. I want to add a fourth that is equally important: farmers. Without farmers, there would be no meal around the table. The humility and selflessness of farmers is something I am thankful for. I am also thankful to serve as the Agriculture Commissioner so that I can be their voice on this day and every day. As you gather around the table this Thanksgiving, remember the hardworking men and women who helped get the fresh produce and meat to your home.
Secretary of State Cord Byrd — This year, when the world at times feels chaotic, I’m especially thankful for long walks on the beach, good books, and time with my family.
Division of Emergency Management Director Kevin Guthrie — What I’m most thankful for this year is my loving wife Polly, stepson Coley, my father and family. I’m also thankful to have such a dedicated team of men and women at the Florida Division of Emergency Management who strive to help the residents of Florida each and every day. We constantly improve and learn from each disaster so we can better serve impacted communities. The resilience and kindness shown to the Division and survivors of disasters like Hurricane Idalia have allowed our team to respond quicker than ever before and support our mission to lead the nation in emergency response. Thank you to everyone at the Division. Have a happy and safe Thanksgiving!
Senate President Kathleen Passidomo — As we look forward to the Thanksgiving Holiday, I am reminded that each and every day throughout the year there is something to be thankful for — the glory of the Gulf at sunset or the mists rising over the Everglades at sunrise. I am thankful for my wonderful husband of 44 years, my three bright and amazing daughters, my two inquisitive and engaging grandsons, and for my constituents who give me the opportunity to serve this incredible state. I’m thankful for my clients and the opportunity to practice law for more than 40 years. I am thankful for my Senate family — We have a wonderful team, and what we have accomplished together will have a positive impact on our state and her people for years to come. As I reflect on the last year and the loss of my father this Fall, I am eternally thankful and grateful for the love and support of so many. Happy Thanksgiving!
Sen. Ben Albritton — I’m thankful that God is still on His throne and loves us!
Sen. Bryan Ávila — I am very thankful for having an amazing, loving, and caring family. I am also grateful to the residents of NW Miami-Dade County for placing their trust in me and giving me the opportunity to serve them in the Florida Senate.
Sen. Lori Berman — I am grateful that I will be able to share this holiday table with many family members, including my mother, daughter, son and son-in-law. I am grateful to represent the citizens of District 26 and am proud of the work our numerous nonprofits do to hopefully make sure no one is hungry on this holiday. Lastly, I am most thankful to all my Senate colleagues for supporting the Israel resolution and showing the world that Never Again is Now.
Senate Democratic Leader Lauren Book — This and every year, I remain most thankful for the health and safety of my family — and I am honored to fight every day to ensure those same things for Floridians across our great state.
Sen. Jim Boyd — I am thankful for my family, my health and that Florida is standing strong with our brothers and sisters in Israel.
Sen. Jenn Bradley— Thanksgiving is a special day to be thankful for our many blessings and to embrace those who enrich our lives. I am thankful for my loving family and the great friendships I’ve forged over the years. These are the sources of my life’s greatest joys. I’m immensely grateful for my time in the Florida Senate and the opportunity I’ve had to serve the people of North Florida. This past year, I’ve been blessed to witness countless examples of those with good hearts who serve causes larger than themselves to lift up this great state. Above all, I’m thankful for the courageous Americans, past and present, who sacrifice to protect and defend our country. From my family to yours, have a happy, safe and joyous Thanksgiving holiday!
Sen. Nick DiCeglie — Each year, I give many thanks for my wonderful and loving family. They are my rock and inspire me to continue serving my community. I’m thankful for my loyal friends, who have been with me through the thick and thin. I’m grateful for my incredible team at Hope Villages of America. Their commitment to the 150,00 people we serve through our programs that deal with food insecurity, domestic abuse, and housing is truly inspiring. I’m thankful for my campaign and legislative staff, who are always there when I need them. And finally, I’m grateful for my Senate family. We continue to do great things for all Floridians, and I’m humbled to play my part. And most importantly, I’m thankful to God. I thank him daily for the wonderful blessings he has bestowed upon me. Happy Thanksgiving!
Sen. Joe Gruters — “This Thanksgiving, I’m grateful for the blessings of family and friends. Additionally, I appreciate the unfolding success of President Trump’s campaign. Wishing you a joy-filled holiday season filled with warmth and gratitude!”
Sen. Travis Hutson — I am thankful to my colleagues and family. Going into my last Session, I am truly blessed to have a wife and kids who have supported me through this process.
Sen. Shevrin Jones — This Thanksgiving, I am grateful for the opportunity to serve my community and for the trust of the people who have given me the chance to represent them. I am thankful for the hardworking individuals and public servants I collaborate with, and I am committed to continuing to work for the betterment of our district. Thank you for your support, and happy Thanksgiving to all!
Sen. Jonathan Martin — Thankful for my wife, kids, our health, the leadership in our State from Gov. DeSantis, Director Guthrie, and President Passidomo and our leaders in Lee County, Fort Myers Beach and Sanibel who have been working extremely hard on Hurricane Ian recovery.
Sen. Tina Polsky — I am so grateful to my dedicated staff who have been through so much this past year. I am so grateful for my family who put up with all the travel and time away from home. I can’t wait for all of us to be back together again and celebrate Thanksgiving. I hope everyone has a safe and wonderful holiday!
Sen. Ana Maria Rodriguez — I am grateful for so much and to so many. For my incredible family which is my support system in everything I do. For my health and that of my loved ones. For those who left us, I am grateful for the imprints they left on my life. To my friends, colleagues and constituents, it’s my utmost honor and privilege to serve this great state.
Sen. Clay Yarborough — My dad passed away earlier this month after battling Alzheimer’s for the past several years, but I am grateful to God for giving him 76 years of life. He and my mom were married for almost 53 years. God also gave my mom super strength to care for him at home during his illness. My dad’s salvation was secure in Jesus, so I know he now has no more pain or sorrow and that I get to see him again one day. Even better, he is with his Savior in eternal glory. Revelation 21:4 declares the promise to those who believe that “God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.”
House Speaker Paul Renner — As I look back at this past Legislative Session — that brought profound, meaningful change to the Sunshine State — and look ahead to continue this important work next Session, I’m thankful for the great honor of serving my state as House Speaker, and for all my dedicated colleagues in the House, Senate, and Governor’s Office who serve alongside me. More than anything, I am thankful for my wonderful wife Adriana, and our two beautiful children — they are the three biggest blessings in my life and my motivation to make the great state of Florida even better.
House Speaker-designate Daniel Perez — Having recently become a father of three with the birth of a beautiful, healthy baby girl, above all else this Thanksgiving I am grateful for our family of five — for my strong wife, Stephanie, and our three children, Camila Lucia, Matias Daniel and Paulina Andrea.
Chair Sam Garrison — Professionally, I’m thankful for the opportunity to fight for the people of Clay County and work to leave Florida stronger and better than we found it.
Rep. Carolina Amesty — I’m thankful to God for another year, family, and the honor of a lifetime to serve my community.
Rep. Robin Bartleman — Everyday, I am grateful for my daughters, my family and our health. I am also blessed to have the opportunity to serve. My top priority when I arrived to Tallahassee was to ensure families had access to affordable medical insurance for their children. I am truly grateful that Speaker Renner shared this priority as well as my colleagues and expanded KidCare. It was the bright light in a very tough Session. Happy Thanksgiving.
Rep. Fabián Basabe — I am thankful the love and support I receive surpasses the hate and the criticism; I am thankful for the health and togetherness of my family and friends, for the privilege to serve and make a difference and, understandably, for my looks.
Rep. Mike Beltran — First, my family. Second, my staff and supporters. Third, a very successful year in my law practice.
Rep. Christopher Benjamin — I’m thankful this year for the blessing of a beautiful new bride, Zakiyyah, who is also loving, compassionate, giving, and attentive to the needs of our family. She is the answer to prayers that I didn’t know how to pray. She’s my voice of comfort, my cheerleader, my reminder that Allah is merciful, my prayer warrior, and she is why I long for a home at the end of each day and whenever I journey away. She is also a phenomenal mother — giving the right amount of encouragement and boundaries to your young daughters who love her tremendously. She also gives guidance to a young teenage adult looking for the right feminine energy to help her life’s journey. She’s the woman’s perspective that our son now turns to for advice that only moms can give.
Rep. Hillary Cassel — I’m grateful that so many of my colleagues from both sides of the aisle chose rectitude and tolerance over barbarity and hatred by uniting in support of Israel as well as Florida’s vibrant Jewish community during the recent Special Session. As a legislator, I was impressed by the fortitude and moral clarity they showed the world by refusing to accept antisemitism at home or abroad; strengthening sanctions against Iran and corporate sponsors of terrorism; and increasing security at Jewish schools and temples. As a Jew, I was heartened by the humanity and compassion they showed me and my family on a very personal level in ways we will never forget.
Rep. Dan Daley — This year — and every year — I am thankful for my family, friends, colleagues, Team 96, and the opportunity to serve this state each day. I’m grateful for the constituents we work for, those who voted for me, and those who didn’t, who together make a diverse community of friends and neighbors. While we still have much to do, I am thankful to live in Florida and the United States. Finally, my waistline might not be, but I’m very thankful for my mom’s Thanksgiving desserts and day after turkey sandwiches …
Rep. Ashley Gantt — I’m thankful for being able to experience joy, love, and being in good health. I’m thankful for my family and loved ones’ support. I’m thankful that my constituents entrusted me to serve them. I’m thankful for being able to honor the sacrifices and endurance of my ancestors by never letting the reality of their lives be trivialized or forgotten with revisionist history. I’m thankful that even in the toughest moments, I have good people who support me and let me know I’m not alone. I’m thankful for my mother and grandmother passing down to me the recipes that have been in our family for generations. And I’m thankful for being able to teach my nieces and nephews those recipes while creating beautiful memories like the ones I have with my mother and grandmother.
Rep. Mike Giallombardo — My family. Can’t be without them.
Rep. Mike Gottlieb — This year, I remain thankful for my family. I am blessed to have my parents, spouse, siblings, and children around me. I am also thankful for the ability to live in such an amazing place, where we enjoy peace and freedom. Today’s world is filled with so much ugliness, we mostly see it from afar on social media and do not have to live it firsthand. I’m grateful I get to have a voice in representing the state of Florida and being able to make an impact in people’s lives to help right these wrongs and make our state a better place.
Rep. Christine Hunschofsky — I am incredibly grateful for my family and friends who I can always rely on for support and encouragement. I am also grateful to the residents of District 95 for the trust they place in me to serve as their Representative in the Florida House. It is an incredible honor. Last but not least, I am grateful to all the helpers in our communities who quietly volunteer, help people in need, or just brighten someone’s day. They inspire me and remind me of all the good there is in this world.
Rep. Chip LaMarca — I am grateful for the opportunity to continue to serve my community for the past 18 years. However, my greatest accomplishment in life is the 31-year relationship with my best friend and our over 28 years of marriage. Life has a way of making you appreciate the things in life that nothing can replace … family.
Rep. Tom Leek — I’m grateful to represent a beautiful part of Florida that I have been honored to serve in the House, and I am so very thankful to be spending Thanksgiving with my family.
Rep. Vicki Lopez — This Thanksgiving I am eternally grateful for my grandson, Stellan, who is celebrating his first Thanksgiving. He is an absolute joy and brings much happiness to me and our family. I am also thankful for the continued support of my legislative aide, Alessandro Marchesani, and my constituents! I owe my success to all of them!
Rep. Fiona McFarland — Bluey. And naps.
Rep. Jim Mooney — I am so thankful to have my mom Louise (92), sister Pam, son Michael, daughter Erica, son-in-law Dan, granddaughters Claire and Alice, fiancé Charity as well as my nephews, all healthy and well on this day. While this Thanksgiving has so much going on around us, we are so blessed to live in America. Wishing all a safe and happy Thanksgiving.
Rep. Angie Nixon — I am thankful for The People of Florida. I am thankful for my family, friends and overall village that loves me and uplifts me no matter what. I am also thankful for my ancestors (who) give me the strength, courage and resiliency to speak the truth and fight for what’s right.
Rep. Toby Overdorf — Family and friends in and out of the process that have enhanced my life. Truly grateful for my wife, Maggie, and the upcoming wedding of our daughter.
Rep. Spencer Roach — Last year was the worst year of my adult life: appendix ruptured on a plane en route to the Governor’s inauguration, hard recovery after my house flooded by Hurricane Ian, drive-by shooting through my front window. Grateful for the lessons that God continues to teach me: patience, perseverance, the power of enduring relationships and the value of experiences over material possessions. I am still here.
Rep. Allison Tant — I’m grateful for my beloved family, my community, and the honor of serving the people of House District 9.
Rep. Katherine Waldron — I am thankful for my family and my friends and for their continued good health. I am thankful for our first responders, our teachers, nurses, doctors and all the volunteers who serve and support our country and without which we would not be blessed to live in such a great country.
Rep. Marie Woodson — First, I’m grateful for my family. God has allowed me to have a family who has been so supportive of me in good times and bad times. I’m grateful for the opportunity to serve the people of Florida. It’s an honor and a privilege to serve the people of (House) District 105. In Haiti, I couldn’t have done that. And the people I get to work with. They are a blessing and I have to give thanks for them.
Palm Beach County State Attorney Dave Aronberg — I’m thankful for the Five Fs: Family, fiancé, friends, furbabies and Florida. Despite all its flaws (in politics and policy), there’s no place I’d rather be.
Miami-Dade School Board member Lucia Baez-Geller — I am thankful for my devoted husband, our fun-loving two-year-old, and our diverse community here in Miami-Dade County. I am thankful for our students and teachers who continue to make me proud to be an educator year after year. I am thankful for my extended St. Patrick Church and Beach High family, and all in our community who continue to serve and uplift those in need right now.”
Hialeah Mayor Esteban “Steve” Bovo — I am thankful for my family and community. I am thankful for living in the greatest nations on the face of the earth. And thankful for the opportunity to defend it and protect it for the next generation.
Miami-Dade Commissioner Kevin Marino Cabrera — Thanksgiving is a time for gratitude, and this year, I’m giving thanks that by this time next year, we will have sent (President Joe) Biden packing and ended his disastrous presidency. Looking forward to brighter days ahead and working to put Miami-Dade First!
Coral Gables Commissioner Melissa Castro — I’m grateful for the opportunity to serve as the Commissioner of Coral Gables, representing the best interests of our residents. The support from the community and the chance to be their voice in decision-making processes are particularly gratifying aspects of my role, allowing me to make a positive impact on the well-being of our City Beautiful.
Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava — This year, I’m thankful to have passed a tax cut for our residents for the second year in a row, while still making key investments in our community’s core priorities, like housing, transportation, public safety, small business, our environment, our families and older adults. We’re continuing to increase the housing supply every day, with 18,000 more units of affordable and workforce housing expected to be complete or reach financial closing by the end of the year. We rolled out the final stage of the Better Bus Network, the first redesign of the County’s public transit system in more than 35 years, bringing more frequency and more reliability to our Metrobus system. And we’re making strides in public safety by continuing our groundbreaking Peace & Prosperity Plan, preventing gun violence at its root, and investing in safer communities. As I look ahead to my fourth year in office, I’m thankful for the privilege of leading Miami-Dade County — the best place to live, work and play in the country — into a safer and more prosperous future.
Miami Lakes Mayor Manny Cid — I’m thankful for my family and the opportunity to serve my neighbors in my hometown. God is good, and it’s important that we help our brothers and sisters in need during this Thanksgiving season.
Jacksonville Mayor Donna Deegan — There is so much that I’m grateful for this year. The people from all walks of life and every corner of the city who make Jacksonville the beautiful mosaic that it is. The thousands of people who cared enough to turn out at our 14 community conversations. The collaboration with the Council on the first budget to pass unanimously in more than a decade. The city employees who keep us moving forward. And the opportunity to unify a city that I love with all my heart. I’m grateful to be your Mayor.
North Miami Mayor Alix Desulme — As Thanksgiving approaches, I find myself reflecting on the abundance of blessings. This is the perfect time to appreciate the warmth of togetherness, the embrace of family, and the moments that shape our journey. In the midst of life’s hustle, I am thankful for the threads of love, family, and cherished moments that weave together to create the masterpiece of life. I take this time to wish everyone a wonderful Thanksgiving filled with warmth, reflection, and the joy of shared blessings.
Broward County Commissioner Steve Geller — I am thankful to be with my family and my friends. I am thankful that my brothers, sister, and I with all our children are still gathering for Thanksgiving this year and for most holidays. I’m thankful that the Broward County Commission, which I serve on, is a collegial body with no major fighting. Then there are some things that I’m profoundly NOT THANKFUL for. I hate that antisemitism is rearing its ugly head again worldwide and in America. I am not thankful that many younger people’s view of the Mideast conflict seems to be formed by TikTok or other social media and that they demonstrate a profound lack of historical understanding. And I’m not thankful for the corrosive divisiveness in today’s politics in the United States. Cooperation and compromise are not bad words.
Miami-Dade Commissioner Rob Gonzalez — Now more than ever, this Thanksgiving, we need to come together, reinforce our family values, and give thanks to God for the things we have. Pray for our leaders and those who protect this great land.
Miami-Dade Commissioner Eileen Higgins — As we gather this Thanksgiving, my heart is filled with gratitude for what’s been achieved this year in Miami-Dade County. From rolling out a more effective bus network to building more affordable housing and strengthening our small business ecosystem, I am thankful that I work in a county that is committed to improving people’s lives. I am grateful for the opportunity to serve my community, and for my support system that helps me get the job done, including my office staff, county employees, community organizers, and local educational institutions. You know who you are. Wishing you and yours a Thanksgiving filled with warmth, joy, and the spirit of giving! P.S. I’m amazingly grateful to my parents, who just celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary. I love you lots!
Monroe County Mayor Holly Raschein — In these uncertain times, I’m truly grateful for my son Drake and his prosperity; I pray it continues throughout his lifetime. I am thankful my parents are healthy and happy, along with the rest of my family and friends. I’d also like to throw some gratitude out to the people of the fabulous Florida Keys; they’re a resilient, kooky, loyal bunch that warms my heart every day. It’s my hope that everyone will take a moment during this festive season to remember what we have, what we’ve lost, and what we can give back. Gobble gobble!
Miami-Dade Commissioner Raquel Regalado — This year I’m grateful that three years of pushing on major infrastructure projects is finally bearing tangible results. These include initiatives such as bringing Tri-Rail all the way into downtown Miami, which should happen by the end of this year. It also includes groundbreaking on the final phase of the Underline, which will bring this transformative linear park and mobility path to District 7. We also have meaningful affordable housing projects underway in South Miami and coming soon to Coconut Grove. I’m also grateful that my colleagues on the County Commission have started to really dig into the septic-to-sewer problem we have countywide. The first couple of years they didn’t understand why I was so obsessed with fixing this major water quality issue for our community, but now everyone’s on board doing projects in most districts and it’s just a beautiful thing.
Miami-Dade Commissioner Anthony Rodriguez — This Thanksgiving, I have many things for which to be grateful. I am blessed to have such an incredible, supportive family, to be able to enjoy many strong friendships — some new and some old — and to have the honor to serve the people of District 10 on the Miami-Dade County Commission.
Coral Gables Mayor Vince Lago — This Thanksgiving, my heart is filled with gratitude for the resilient spirit of our community and the dedication of our residents. Despite the challenges we’ve faced, the unity and strength of our city have shone through. I’m thankful for the tireless efforts of our essential workers, the generosity of our volunteers, and the unwavering support of our citizens. On a personal note, I am especially grateful for the love and support of my family. My two daughters bring boundless joy and inspiration to my life, and their laughter and warmth remind me of the importance of cherishing moments with loved ones. Moreover, I appreciate the opportunity to serve as the Mayor of this remarkable city. It is a privilege to work alongside passionate individuals committed to making a positive impact on the lives of our residents.
Aventura Mayor Howard Weinberg — I’m thankful to be blessed with wonderful children, health, and happiness. I’m thankful to be a part of a Commission whose members genuinely care about doing what is best for our residents. Aventura has had incredible leaders since its founding. Each Commission has had the opportunity to build on the success of the one before it. No politics. No fighting — just debates, decisions, and great outcomes.
Coral Gables Commissioner Ariel Fernandez — This year has been full of incredible blessings for me. I am truly grateful for the gifts of family, friends, and health and for the trust bestowed upon me by my fellow Coral Gables residents to represent their interests on the City Commission. I am honored and grateful. Thank you, Coral Gables!
Miami Beach Commissioner Kristen Rosen Gonzalez — There is so much I am grateful for: being a U.S. citizen and the safety and security that comes with that privilege, health children and a loving husband, constituents who appreciate me, the Miami Dade College family and students I am fortunate enough to teach, my house in Miami Beach, my opponents who teach me hard lessons, successes and failures because they are both important, my wonderful hometown of Miami Beach, and finally, my good friend and mentor Michael Góngora, who I hope will get elected Mayor of Miami Beach on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving.
Miami Beach Commissioner David Richardson — I am thankful to be surrounded by so many close friends, and the opportunity to live in a diverse community that is accepting of everyone.
Orlando City Commissioner Patty Sheehan — A successful election. And the purchase of the Pulse property by the City of Orlando for the memorial.
Broward County Commissioner Michael Udine — I am thankful for my wife Stacey, our kids, my parents and our family and friends. We are blessed that all are in good health. This year, I am especially thankful to all of our veterans and active service members of the U.S. armed forces (and the IDF) for all they have done and are doing to protect freedom and our democratic way of life. I look forward to peace, health and prosperity for all. Wishing a very happy Thanksgiving and holiday season to all.
Citrus County Commission Chair Ruthie Davis Schlabach — I am thankful for the grace the Lord shows me every day. Grateful for my family and friends, whose love is a constant source of strength and joy in every journey. I cherish the moments that shape my story, and I’m thankful for each one. Wishing everyone a heart full of gratitude.
Citrus County Commissioner Diana Finegan — I am abundantly thankful for the grace of God and the love of a living Savior. I also give thanks daily for my family, friends, good health, and the blessings of our Lord. ‘May the Lord bless you and keep you … and give you peace.’
Citrus County Commissioner Holly Davis — My family is thankful for the legacy of honor and service my father left to us as we approach the first anniversary of his passing. I am thankful to live in a corner of paradise, and to have the opportunity to serve my community.
Citrus County Commissioner Jeff Kinnard — I’m thankful for so many undeserved blessings in my life. My family, friends, community, opportunities, experiences, and Savior are the things that come to mind first when I start counting. I’m a very blessed, and thankful, man!
St. Petersburg Mayor Ken Welch — “Grateful to live in a city noted as one of the: best run cities, happiest towns, best places to book a tee time, best weekend getaways, best travel destinations, best for work-life balance, and most inclusive. Thankful for Progress, Partnership and the People who make it all possible. We Are St. Pete.”
Sarasota County School Board member Bridget Ziegler — I am grateful for the tremendous opportunities I’ve been afforded this past year. I am especially grateful for Leadership Institute’s founder, Morton Blackwell, for giving me the tremendous opportunity to lead the National School Board & Education Training program at the Leadership Institute. We opened a new 6,000-square-foot training facility here in Sarasota, where my team and I are able to train thousands of people across the U.S. to have an impact on their local communities. I am MOST grateful for the amazing people in my life. My three daughters — who bring me more joy each day than anything else in the world, my husband — who joins me as we navigate this wild arena and roller coaster of life; my friends — who’ve stood by me and even joined me on this important journey, my tremendous team at LI — who amaze me every day, and most importantly — my parents. Their unconditional love and support have given me a foundation to get through pretty much anything. I’m grateful to have them here in Sarasota & that they are able to share their wisdom with my children as they get older.
Allison Aubuchon, founder of Allison Aubuchon Communications — Josh Aubuchon’s fried turkey-making skills.
Erin Daly Ballas — This year I am thankful for the hard stuff. My family lost my mom, our Gigi, in January and finding our way through life without her by our sides has been hard. I am thankful for my Dad, DaddyPop and the love he has shown. I am thankful for friends who are family (Melanie Brown and Jon Yapo) who have loved us and listened to happy memories and tough feelings. I am thankful for Jack and Keyna Cory and for our clients- old and new. I am thankful for my kids, who are growing into wonderful little people who can always make me smile. And I am thankful for my husband, James; he is the best teammate and always has my back.
Tracey and Matthew Blair — This year, we are particularly thankful for our children who fill our lives with joy and our work family whose camaraderie and passion for serving others are qualities we truly appreciate and admire.”
Ron Book — I am most grateful for my restored health and for the family and friends who surrounded me over the last 18 months, supporting and encouraging me as I had their collective strength in fighting the battle to get better. I am also thankful that in the community that I live, I lead the effort to feed all of the homeless year-round, but especially so during this Thanksgiving holiday as we work to house them all as well.
Dominic Calabro, president and CEO of Florida TaxWatch — I am thankful for my faith, family, friends, country, the awesome Sunshine State and the incredible institution of Florida TaxWatch. I deeply appreciate its generous and distinguished volunteer leaders and our spectacular and dedicated staff/Team TaxWatch. And I appreciate our warm and wonderful Highgrove Community. Life is good, and we are very blessed!!
Brad Coker, CEO/managing director of Mason-Dixon Polling & Strategy — To have a large number of family coming to Florida to celebrate this year, including several in their 90s.
Alecia Collins — I’m thankful for my family, friends, and the hardworking women and men who have worked around the clock responding to emergencies statewide. From the flooding in Broward to Hurricane Idalia you all have been critical in the State’s ability to respond to, prepare for, and to mitigate against disasters. Thank you and have a wonderful Thanksgiving!
Chloe Conboy, deputy district director at Rep. Vern Buchanan’s Office — I’m grateful to have a boss like Vern Buchanan who gave me the day off to see Taylor Swift’s The Eras Tour. #Swiftie
Gus Corbella — I have been so fortunate in my life, and I hope I always express the gratitude I feel every day. I am thankful for another productive lobbying year with my colleagues and cherished clients, and another great year of experiences at Poco Vino. I am grateful for my beautiful wife and partner in adventure, Amanda; for my wonderful son, Miles, and for my family and friends who are family to us. We raise a glass to you all from Barcelona this year — ¡Salud and Happy Thanksgiving!
Michael and Jessica Corcoran — This year, our hearts are especially grateful for the grace of God, the unwavering support of family, and the cherished presence of friends. These gifts have enriched our lives beyond what we could ask for.
Former Rep. Bob Cortes — I am thankful for God, Family, friends, faith, patience, perseverance and resiliency. Thankful for all these because after dealing with health issues recently, the best medicine is always having faith, being patient and having your family by your side praying to God. Happy Thanksgiving!”
Keyna Cory of Public Affairs Consultants — I have so much to be thankful for … a wonderful husband, Jack, who supports me in everything I do. My Dad, Kenny Dyar, who, at 88, bowls 4 times a week and averages over 200. A great little brother, Chris. Well, I call him my little brother even though he is over 6’7. The Ballas Family, Erin, the best business partner one could ever wish for, our Senior Intern, Dayton and Junior Intern, Jett, and James. The Kottkamps, Jeff, Cyndie and our Godson, Jackson. And finally, the Cory Corgis, Skipper and KaCee … the senior rescue pups that make us laugh every single day!
Karen Cyphers, partner and VP of Research at Sachs Media — Goodies and Metro Deli for being constants in seas of change, offering friendly faces and good eats through the years 🙂
Mark Delegal, partner at Delegal | Aubuchon Consulting — I’m thankful to live in the greatest state in the greatest country, working for the best clients and with the best people. I’m most grateful for the love of Ginger, Liz, Mary Katherine, Cookie and my mom.
Nikki Fried, Florida Democratic Party Chair — This year, I am thankful for our democracy. I was always told growing up that in order to have a functioning democracy; we needed two strong political parties — that’s why I am so grateful for the opportunity to lead the Florida Democratic Party at a time when democracy and so much more are on the ballot. Thanks to our staff, volunteers and Dems from Key West to Pensacola for staying in the fight. Today and every day, I am proud to be a Floridian — and as always, go gators!
Former Rep. Joe Geller — On this upcoming Thanksgiving, I’m grateful for my family and old friends, for freedom and for the steady leadership of President Joe Biden.
Patrick Gillespie, Government Relations adviser at Adams and Reese LLP — I’m thankful for colleagues from different parts of The Process and different stages of my career willing to provide advice, support, and guidance despite this being a highly competitive environment.
Former Miami Beach Commissioner (and possible Mayor-elect) Michael Góngora — During this Thanksgiving, I have an abundance of reasons to feel immense gratitude. Firstly, my heart overflows with appreciation for my loving family and supportive friends whose unwavering presence has brought joy and strength into my life. Their love and encouragement have been invaluable, especially during my journey of recovery from cancer. Additionally, the overwhelming support I received from the residents of Miami Beach who voted to put me in the runoff fills me with gratitude. Their belief in me and their willingness to rally behind my cause is truly humbling.
Tanya Jackson, founding partner of PinPoint Results — I have so much gratitude for this process and all the people in it! Everyone I have met has allowed me to have a wonderful career, one of the best teams in the business, the very best clients, old and new relationships with those brave enough to run for public office, smart and savvy colleagues in other firms, all of the amazing legislature and executive branch staff, and the press corps. You all are what I am most grateful for!!!
James Jacobs — I’m thankful for a healthy one-year-old JJ!
Scott Jenkins — I am thankful for God, who gives me hope; my wife and children, who I dearly love and stand behind me; my work partners, who support me and make me laugh; and the Clemson Tigers, who, frankly, were disappointing this year, but there is always next year.
David Johnson — While I’m thankful for the traditions of Thanksgiving, spending time laughing with family and friends who are family, I’m most thankful for Christina being in my life, every day.
Marian P. Johnson, executive director of the Florida Chamber Political Institute — I am thankful for my relationship with my Lord and Savior, my wonderful, loving family, the breath of life, and really, true friends.
Jeff Johnston and Amanda Stewart — This year, as we are surrounded by our families, we are praying for the people of Israel where so many innocent lives have been lost to terror. We are thankful for our service members who keep a watchful eye over us, as they spend the holiday away from their own families in order to protect our nation.
Natalie Kelly, CEO of the Florida Association of Managing Entities — I’m grateful for my faith, family, friends and Florida. I’m also grateful for a “strong family” leadership who prioritizes behavioral health services so Floridians can live their lives to their fullest potential.
Alexandria Kernan, Government Affairs Consultant for Gunster — A supportive family and new opportunities.
Eric Knowles, Miami-Dade Chamber of Commerce president and CEO — First I would like to say I am thankful for good health and the ability to get up and do the work I do every day. Thankful for my family and friends and for God’s patience and blessings!!!
Jack Levine, founder of the 4Generations Institute — I’m most thankful for the health and joy of our granddaughters. We wish the same for all the children of the world.
Roly Marante, managing partner of Strategic Access Group — This year we are extremely grateful to live in a country and state where freedom and family are valued and cherished. Many blessings to everyone who reads this and their families as we celebrate Thanksgiving!
Kathy Mears — Family and friends.
Bob McClure, president and CEO of The James Madison Institute — I am thankful for my beautiful wife and our 30 years of marriage. I am thankful for our daughters and sons (in law), and I am thankful that we live in the most beautifully diverse and freest state in the country.
Joe Mobley, partner and principal of The Fiorentino Group — I’m thankful for our outstanding clients who stay with us year after year and for the results we help them attain. I’m also grateful for the good, hardworking elected officials who take the time to understand the positive impacts our clients have on this great state and their willingness to help. Further, I’m thankful for my partners and colleagues at The Fiorentino Group. Everyone in our firm punches above their weight and they do it in an honest, respectful, and ethical manner. It is nice going to bed every night knowing that our team does it the right way. Personally, I’m blessed to have an incredible wife, Kristina, and amazing kids, Mariah and Troy. They are my “why” and I can’t thank them enough for their unwavering support — and no, I wouldn’t choose my dog over any of you!
Lee Moffitt, former Florida House Speaker — I am grateful for the many doctors, researchers, nurses and staff at the Moffitt Cancer Center who contribute to the prevention and cure of cancer every day!
U.S. Senate candidate and former U.S. Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell — This year and every year, I’m grateful for the health of my children, my mom, my friends, and for the opportunity to live in this great state full of incredible and hardworking people.
Sal Nuzzo, senior vice president for The James Madison Institute — I am thankful for Jacqueline, the nicest gate agent in the country, who greets me so often as I board a Delta flight that she now knows me by name.
Alex Patton — I am thankful for the social scientists in Florida’s universities attempting to better understand human behavior under increasingly difficult circumstances. And my wife who puts up with all my bullshit.
Darryl Paulson, Emeritus Professor of Government and Politics at USF St. Petersburg — I am thankful I turned 75, I am thankful I celebrated 50 years of marriage to the same woman, I am thankful my daughter moved from Massachusetts to Palm Harbor and I know have both of my children and all 5 grandchildren living within 30 minutes of my house, and I am most thankful that Donald Trump is not President.
Rachel Pienta — I’m grateful for caring communities that come together to help after disasters — like North Florida came together after Hurricane Idalia.
Sean Phillippi — I am grateful for the opportunity to try and make the world a better place by doing meaningful work. Additionally, I am grateful for the countless nameless people who help their fellow man/woman with no fanfare while being overworked and underpaid.
Jenn Poggie, Pinnacle Media — Above all, I’m grateful for my family, especially my three wonderful daughters. I’m also grateful to work with such talented and passionate clients and for two years of success for Pinnacle Media.
J.C. Pritchett — Grateful for all who are committed to preserving Democracy for our children and their children.
James Richardson — Our new administration’s support for the environment, sustainability and resilience.
Franco Ripple, vice president at Direct Impact — I’m grateful that, despite the overwhelming lack of comity and humanity in our politics, there remain good people with good hearts determined to do good things for others.
Evan Ross, CEO of Public Communicators Group — I’m grateful for all those who have taken a meaningful stance against antisemitism since October 7th. I’m especially grateful for non-Jewish elected leaders like Shevrin Jones, Jason Pizzo, Chris Benjamin, Alix Desulme, and Linda Julien who continue to show up for the Jewish community.
Ron Sachs — Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday — because we all always have so much for which to be grateful. But this will be the first Thanksgiving for our family and friends without our beloved middle daughter/sister, Aimee Nicole Sachs, who passed away on May 31st. Surely, it is the singularly hardest and worst thing that has ever happened to us. We miss her so much every day. Still, we will love this Thanksgiving, too. In addition to deeply appreciating the many loving prayers and kindness extended to us throughout this time by so many, we will still have full hearts of gratitude — being thankful for the 38 years-plus that Aimee was in our lives every day. While we miss her terribly, we retain a new attitude of gratitude for the very gift of our lives — and for the family and framily of friends whose own lives reflect that every day is indeed a gift from God. Happy Thanksgiving to all!
Kelly Skidmore — I am grateful for my daughter’s well-being, my husband’s happiness at work and at home, my mother’s devoted caretakers, my father’s health, and the love of my siblings. I am thankful to have work that gives me purpose and allows me to serve my community. I am comforted by having food and shelter, clothing, transportation, and a supportive network of friends. Like many people, I have been without these things during periods of my life, which makes me ever more appreciative to count them as blessings during this season of thanks.
Former Fort Lauderdale Vice Mayor Ben Sorensen — Now having served in the Navy Reserve for 15 years, I am thankful for all of our service members around the world who go into harm’s way to defend freedom, liberty and justice around the world.
John Stemberger, Florida Family Policy Council president and General Counsel — God’s mercy.
Lane Stephens, partner at SCG Governmental Affairs — Joetta and I are thankful for the outpouring of love and support that we’ve received over the past year. The Fall of 2022 was incredibly painful for our family, and I’m not sure we could have survived without our family and friends to keep us moving forward.
Brad Swanson, president and CEO at Florida Internet & Television — Thank you to FloridaCommerce’s Office of Broadband for their diligence in executing broadband grants. Florida Internet & Television’s members are working to connect unserved areas in Florida in partnership with FloridaCommerce grants approved by the Florida Legislature and Gov. DeSantis.
Former Sen. Annette Taddeo — I’m grateful that Donald Trump, Matt Gaetz, Marjorie Taylor Greene, and George Santos are NOT Democrats!
Eddie Thompson — I’m thankful for God’s mercy that is new each day! I’m thankful for my wife and our four children (Noah, Miles, Amelia and Elliot) — the worst part about Tallahassee is leaving my family at home. I’m thankful for my boss’ boss (Joe York) and boss (Casey Reed) — their intention to make me a better person is noted and appreciated. I’m thankful that I’m not consumed with football this year so as to spend more “present” time with my family. This lack of consumption has everything to do with being a Gator and a Saints fan (IYKYK). Thankful for the Sunburn — I love reading whose birthday it is and seeing when my friends land great jobs! I actually hate those mornings when it’s off.
Screven Watson — My family, my blessings, friends in the process, Nole and Dawg fans everywhere, and Jordon Travis for what he meant to FSU during the darkest and the happiest of times. Finally, to the Carter Family from Plains — they came to us in the post-Watergate era, providing honesty and integrity to a nation desperately in need.
Jason Welty — I’m thankful for all the hardworking people in the Jefferson County Clerk’s office. They are truly dedicated public servants and serve the community with their heart and soul.
Jessie Werner, director at Red Hills Strategies — What am I thankful for this year? New beginnings.
Valerie Wickboldt — I am extremely grateful for God’s graciousness and the wisdom that only comes from experiencing life’s ups and downs, the health and happiness of my dear family, our trusted circle of friends, and their positive impacts on our professional and personal lives, and new opportunities from inspiring leaders that encourage your energy and enthusiasm, igniting that spark again!
Gregory Wilson — Without question, I’m grateful for the love of the same great woman for over 35 years.
Mark Wilson, president & CEO, Florida Chamber of Commerce — Free enterprise isn’t free. I’m thankful for the leadership of Gov. DeSantis, Attorney General Ashley Moody, CFO Jimmy Patronis, Agriculture Commissioner Wilton Simpson, Senate President Kathleen Passidomo, House Speaker Paul Renner and all the pro-jobs legislators who fight daily to make Florida even more competitive on the global stage.
Dr. Peter Wish — My health and family.
Christian Ulvert, president of EDGE Communications — Celebrating my 10th wedding anniversary this year with my loving husband was a great reminder of how thankful I am to have a beautiful family. Our foundation is supported by mutual respect, love and admiration for each other, and I am grateful for Carlos this Thanksgiving and every day. I am also blessed to have a wonderful team at EDGE and going into 2024, I am grateful for the work we continue to do collectively as we are stronger together.
Christian Ziegler, Republican Party of Florida Chair — Easy. My wife and three daughters who give me hope, purpose and clarity in the midst of all the chaos and uncertainty around the world.
— THE TRAIL —
]“A new group linked to Ron DeSantis allies pops up in Iowa” via Shane Goldmacher of The New York Times — A new political group with ties to DeSantis began reserving airtime in Iowa on Monday, a surprising new player in the 2024 Republican Primary. The reservations — more than $700,000 as of early Monday afternoon — were being made by an entity called Fight Right, according to AdImpact, a media-tracking company. A nonprofit by that name, Fight Right Inc., was registered in Florida last week with the Federal Election Commission by a Tallahassee-based treasurer, state and federal records show. The emergence of a new pro-DeSantis group at this stage of the race is unusual, in part because DeSantis has worked so closely with Never Back Down, his primary super PAC, after transferring $82.5 million to the group this year.
— MORE 2024 —
“Presidential debates set for next year In Virginia, Utah, and Texas” via Aneeta Mathur-Ashton of The Messenger — The locations for next year’s presidential debates have been set for Virginia, Utah, and Texas according to the Commission on Presidential Debates. The Commission announced the news in several posts on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter. Texas State University will hold the first debate on Sept. 16, 2024. That will be followed by another one on Oct. 1 at Virginia State University. The last debate will be held on Oct. 9 at the University of Utah. The Commission also announced the vice-presidential debate will held on Sept. 25 at Lafayette College.
“Jeanette Nuñez launches ‘Holiday Letters to Heroes’” via Peter Schorsch of Florida Politics — Lt. Gov. Nuñez is launching a “Holiday Letters to Heroes” program encouraging Florida’s K-8 students to write holiday letters to people deployed or on active duty in the Florida National Guard this season. Nuñez’s initiative, LG on Mission, collaborates with the Florida Department of Education to collect and send letters to support military service members. Notes will be accepted Nov. 17 through Dec. 15. “Being away from one’s family is difficult, especially during the holidays. These men and women have courageously served our state, and we want to share our gratitude and appreciation for their service,” Nuñez said.
“Early holiday shopping surge expected” via Peter Schorsch of Florida Politics — There’s bad news for anyone annoyed when Christmas decorations start gracing the halls of retail establishments before kids have even said “trick or treat” — nearly half of consumers said they started or had planned to start their holiday shopping before Nov. 1. The survey, taken by the National Retail Federation, found that was the case with 43% of respondents. “It’s clear that shoppers are already in the holiday spirit and in search of the perfect gift,” said Scott Shalley, Florida Retail Federation president and CEO. “Florida retailers are here to help. With great products, excellent customer service and holiday deals, your local retail stores are the best place to shop this holiday season. When you choose to ‘Find It In Florida,’ you’re supporting local jobs and businesses this merry season.”
“GOP idea to overhaul Florida judicial circuits rejected by panel” via John Kennedy of USA Today Network — A Florida Supreme Court-appointed panel is poised to finalize a report rejecting a Republican-backed idea that critics warned was intended to expand conservative control of Florida’s justice system. The Judicial Circuit Assessment Committee spent two hours Friday reviewing its recommendation against Florida’s 20 judicial circuits undergoing any merger or consolidation of their boundaries. The report, set to go to justices at the beginning of next month, is the result of the panel spending four months analyzing the proposal to consider redrawing the circuits, made in June by House Speaker Renner.
“After scorching Summer, legislators chew over costs of cooling down prisons” via Amanda Rabines of the Orlando Sentinel — Prison officials and lawmakers on both sides of the aisle acknowledge there’s a problem with extreme heat conditions inside Florida prisons, but the clearest path to providing Florida’s correctional institutions with air conditioning will likely take decades to complete and come at a staggering cost. And that’s if the state is willing to make the investment, which is far from certain. With record-hot temperatures likely to continue, several Democratic state legislators and prison reform advocates are working on more immediate solutions to relieve people inside, including correctional officers who often have to endure grueling conditions while working. In recent weeks, Sen. Tracie Davis and Rep. Angie Nixon, both representing Jacksonville, filed identical bills that would make it a requirement to provide some cool air inside dorm units by July 1.
— DC MATTERS —
“Joe Biden pardons big birds” via Axios — Liberty and Bell — two 42-pound turkeys — were pardoned today by Biden and spared from the Thanksgiving table. They’re squarely in the middle of the flock of turkeys pardoned over the last 40 years (charted above). The turkeys traveled from Minnesota in a Cadillac Escalade and stayed overnight at a suite in the Willard Intercontinental near the White House.
“Bidens getting early start on Thanksgiving week by having dinner with service members” via Will Weissert of The Associated Press — Biden visited naval installations in Virginia on Sunday to kick off the Thanksgiving holiday week, introducing an early screening of the upcoming movie “Wonka” and sharing a “friendsgiving” meal with service members and their relatives. Biden also paid tribute Sunday to former First Lady Rosalynn Carter, who died Sunday, and to President Jimmy Carter. “They brought so much grace to the office,” Biden said. The President and First Lady Jill Biden headed to a packed auditorium at Naval Support Activity Hampton Roads to introduce the new film centered around the early life of Roald Dahl’s fictional eccentric chocolatier, Willy Wonka. It will be officially released Dec. 15.
Happening Monday — The White House will host a media preview for the 2023 Holidays at the White House. For interested media, please register at the respective preview times: 5 a.m.: TV Pool only. 6-7 a.m.: Unilateral TV coverage only, with taped stand-ups accommodated. 7:30-8:30 a.m.: Open press, with taped stand-ups accommodated. 8:30 — 9:30 a.m.: Still photographers only: 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW · Washington, D.C.
Marco Rubio video slams ‘Bidenomics’ — U.S. Sen. Rubio released a video blasting Biden over inflation. “Millions of Americans are feeling the effects of the bad economy as they head home for Thanksgiving,” Rubio’s office said in a news release. “Virtually across the board, they are met with increased food, gas, and travel costs.” The minute-long video includes several news clips of pundits complaining about higher prices, including “$18 Big Mac meals.” The on-screen text says, “This holiday season, prices are increasing because of Bidenomics. Bidenomics is a failure. Bidenomics is hurting American families.”
To watch the ad, please click the image below:
Happening today — U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor will bring together several local independent businesses in St. Petersburg to highlight their holiday offerings in advance of Small Business Saturday: 10 a.m., The Merchant, 645 Central Avenue, St. Petersburg.
— THANKSGIVING READS —
“At the first national Thanksgiving, the Civil War raged” via Ted Widmer of The Washington Post — As the Civil War raged in 1863, President Abraham Lincoln and his Secretary of State, William H. Seward, issued a proclamation on Oct. 3 calling for a national holiday to be observed on “the last Thursday of November.” That proclamation might do good service again in a nation that could use healing words. The Civil War is never that distant; in troubling ways, it has resurfaced in recent months as an implied threat of a conflict that may reignite someday. Even in the worst months of the fighting, with violence all-around them, they saw a better day coming when Americans would return to the same table, in the “full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility and Union.”
“The invention of Thanksgiving” via Philip Deloria of The New Yorker — Americans have been celebrating Thanksgiving for nearly four centuries, commemorating that solemn dinner in November 1621. We know the story well, or think we do. Adorned in funny hats, large belt buckles, and clunky black shoes, the Pilgrims of Plymouth gave thanks to God for his blessings. The local Indians, supporting characters who generously pulled the Pilgrims through the first Winter and taught them how to plant corn. Almost none of this is true. In Pilgrim’s terms, the first Thanksgiving was not a “thanksgiving” but a “rejoicing.” An actual giving of thanks required fasting and quiet contemplation; rejoicing featured feasting, drinking, militia drills, target practice, and contests of strength and speed. It was a party, not a prayer, and was full of people shooting at things.
“Why is Thanksgiving celebrated on Thursdays?” via Kathryn Hubbard and Jocelina Joiner for WFLA — According to the Old Almanac, Thursday may have been designated “to distance the event from the Sabbath day among the Puritan colonists.” It also states that Thursday was also a lecture day in New England and ministers would give sermons every Thursday afternoon. Then, during George Washington’s first term as president, he proclaimed Thursday, Nov. 26, 1789, as a “Day of Publick Thanksgivin” in honor of the new U.S. Constitution. Later, in 1863, according to the Old Almanac, Abraham Lincoln proclaimed the national day of Thanksgiving to be the last Thursday of November. The fourth Thursday in November was finally established in 1941 when Thanksgiving became a federal holiday.
“Why Thanksgiving still wins, in one paragraph” via Michael Schaffer of The New Republic — “It’s a holiday to be proud of: Humble without being morose, generous without being opulent, old without being irrelevant, intimate but also all about community. At a time of income inequality, the feast that is its central organizing event is made of ingredients that are democratic. In an era of suspicion, it celebrates immigrants. During a period of polarization, it’s something we all agree on. It can be religious if you want, but it doesn’t have to be: Thank the Almighty, thank your friends, thank your lucky stars — it’s all good.”
“Saying grace: How a moment of thanks, religious or not, adds meaning to our meals” via Emily Heil of The Washington Post — This Thanksgiving, it’s likely to be heard at tables around the country. After all, the purpose of the holiday is to express gratitude. Many families who don’t typically pray before meals will do so, and those who do might expand the ritual. The act of saying grace seems to be as varied as recipes for stuffing. The words people utter may be secular or religious, perhaps blended from various traditions. They could be familiar phrases repeated over and over or invented on the spot. People create games to get their children involved. They say grace over fast-food burritos and elaborate holiday meals. Saying grace “is medicine to the ingratitude that we can develop.”
“Thanksgiving tips to keep everyone happy and sane at your holiday gathering” via Becky Krystal of The Washington Post — Make as much as you can in advance. Don’t give up if you wait until the last minute. Ask for help. Clear your fridge. Set out some snacks before the meal. Learn how to make the best use of your oven. Not everything has to be hot or even warm. Have containers to send leftovers home with your guests.
—”The 9 best Thanksgiving songs I definitely didn’t just make up” via Alexandra Petri of The Washington Post
“Five myths about turkey” via Tamar Haspel of The Washington Post — 1. Ben Franklin almost made the turkey the national bird. In a 1784 satirical letter to his daughter, he maligned the eagle’s “bad moral character.” The turkey is a “more respectable bird, and withal a true original native of America,” Franklin wrote. 2. Stuffing turkey is a recipe for food poisoning. Yes, it’s important to take precautions when cooking poultry, but you can safely stuff a turkey — generations of Americans wouldn’t have risked death for the sake of a more flavorful side dish. 3. Basting is better. Not so fast, says Meathead Goldwyn, the force behind AmazingRibs.com and the author of “Meathead: The Science of Great Barbecue and Grilling.” The problem is that basting prolongs cooking times. “Think of it like sweat after a long workout,” Goldwyn told me via email, “it cools you off.” And basting may moisten the bird, “but not a lot,” says Goldwyn. 4. Thanksgiving turkey makes you sleepy. Tryptophan doesn’t necessarily induce sleep, and it’s doubtful that turkey’s the culprit for your post-Thanksgiving-dinner nap. 5. Turkey was Thanksgiving’s first entree. Kathleen Wall, a culinarian at Plimouth Plantation, a history museum that re-creates the original Plymouth colony, told Smithsonian, “Wildfowl was there … venison was there,” water birds like goose or duck were likely candidates, and passenger pigeons were a plentiful game at the time. But turkey probably wasn’t the featured dish.
“The rise and fall of turkey brining” via Kim Severson of The New York Times — Like the length of a trouser leg, turkey fashion shifts. Interviews with the big players in food media over the past few weeks suggest that the wet, salty turkey has lost its appeal among many of the people who once did the most to promote it. “I’m so over it,” said Alex Guarnaschelli, the New York chef and television personality. Never mind that her turkey-brining recipe — thick with honey, molasses and soy — is still prominently displayed on the Food Network website. “I’m not afraid to admit evolution has occurred with my cooking, and I’ll go on record as someone who has a great brine recipe,” she said. “But right now, I am in a no-brining phase.” Why the change of heart on brining? “It’s enormous. It’s wonky. It’s ambitious,” she said. “And I don’t always love the texture.”
“A cure for Thanksgiving stress? For many, it’s a cruise.” via Priya Krishna of The New York Times — Going to sea with thousands of strangers might seem at odds with a holiday so intimately tethered to the idea of home. COVID-19 dealt a punishing blow to the cruise industry, but as cruise lines have eased their health restrictions in recent months, bookings have soared — especially for Thanksgiving. Viking Cruises and Holland America Line reported last week that sailings during Thanksgiving week were nearing or at capacity, filled primarily with American passengers. A Viking spokesperson said Thanksgiving bookings have risen 48% this year over 2019, before the pandemic. “There seems to be an endless demand for cruising around this time,” said Vivek Menon, the executive chef of Carnival Cruise Line.
“What are you supposed to call your in-laws these days?” via Gretchen Tarrant of The Wall Street Journal — This year could approach a record for weddings in the U.S. Quite a few newlyweds have no clue what to call their in-laws. Mom and Dad? Bill and Judy? Hey there? Advice columns have tackled this etiquette puzzle for years, and it is still popping up in households to a surprising degree. The pollster YouGov conducted its first-ever survey on the topic in recent months at the behest of a British colleague who wondered if the in-law discord he saw featured in American television and movies was real. It was. According to YouGov’s July poll, 29% of couples call their in-laws by their first names, 17% refer to them as Mom and/or Dad, and 9% use Mr., Mrs. or Ms. The rest don’t have relationships with their in-laws or aren’t sure what to call them.
“At Danksgiving, there’s no need to go outside for a smoke” via Jackie Bryant of The New York Times — Until fairly recently, Danksgiving wasn’t much more than a funny word that cannabis fans used for smoking weed on Thanksgiving. It’s unclear how many Americans hold Danksgiving dinners; the stigma that still surrounds the use of cannabis in many families and places may discourage revelers from sharing their celebrations on social media. But there is evidence that cannabis use is rising around Thanksgiving. In 2018, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration ran a #DitchDanksgiving social media campaign, warning those who did participate not to drive under the influence. Just one day before the holiday is another event promoting cannabis consumption: Green Wednesday, the weed shopper’s equivalent of Black Friday. Online sales of marijuana on Green Wednesday last year rose 78% over the average for the previous three Wednesdays.
— THANKSGIVING IN FLORIDA —
“For Thanksgiving, add old Florida fare to your table of gratitude. Some historians note the 1565 meal at St. Augustine.” via Joy Wallace Dickinson of the Orlando Sentinel — Floridians have spread the word about our “real” first Thanksgiving with recipes for dishes such as garbanzo-bean soup made with chorizo, potatoes and saffron. That’s the sort of fare Spanish soldiers and Florida Indians probably shared back in 1565. Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings’ “Cross Creek Cookery” (1942) is always a great place to turn for further inspiration for old Florida fare. Earlier this Fall, Geoff Gates and Donna Wright of the Rawlings Historic State Park in Cross Creek visited the Orlando Public Library’s Cuisine Corner to demonstrate Rawlings recipes, including chicken pilau (pronounced “pur-loo”). “Feeding the masses with almost nothing — that’s the genius of pilau,” Gates noted. “No Florida church supper, no large gathering, is without it,” Rawlings wrote in 1942.
“Florida’s unique turkey species gobbles on” via David Flesher of the Orlando Sentinel … An elusive variety of the giant bird will be gobbling, clucking and flying at surprisingly high speed through South Florida’s fields and forests … Osceola turkey, also called the Florida wild turkey … a subspecies unique to the state’s peninsula. Smaller and darker than its Northern cousins, the Osceola can be found at the southeastern end of Everglades National Park, at the far western edge of Broward County, in the forests of northwestern Palm Beach County, and throughout the Peninsula up to about Jacksonville. The state’s native turkey has turned into an unlikely tourist draw, attracting hunters seeking to complete their “grand slam” of all five North American turkey subspecies. At the J.W. Corbett Wildlife Management Area in northern Palm Beach County, hunters killed 103 turkeys in the last three seasons … Their speed would surprise anyone who thinks of turkeys as waddling blobs of meat and feathers. According to the National Wild Turkey Federation, a wild turkey can run up to 25 miles per hour and briefly achieve a flying speed of 55 miles per hour.
“Did you know? 7 interesting facts about wild turkeys in Florida” via Mark H. Bickel of the Fort Myers News-Press — It’s that time of year again. Time to talk turkey. While it’s the alligator that is the king of creatures big and small in the Sunshine State, other popular wildlife in Florida includes dolphins, crocodiles, manatees, snakes, turtles, panthers, black bears and dozens of bird species like pelicans or flamingos? But let’s not forget about the wild turkey. Not nearly as pretty as a flamingo or as ferocious as a gator, Florida’ wild turkeys have carved out their niche in a diverse animal kingdom. They have something to gobble about and deserve our attention, especially as we countdown to another Thanksgiving Day celebration.
“If you want to be historically accurate this holiday, serve alligator” via the Jacksonville Historical Society — Fifty-six years before the Pilgrims celebrated their feast, Spanish explorer Don Pedro Menendez de Aviles arrived on the coast of Florida. He came ashore Sept. 8, 1565, naming the land on which he stepped “St. Augustine” in honor of the saint on whose feast day, Aug. 28, the land was sighted. Members of the Timucua tribe, which had occupied the site for more than 4,000 years, greeted Menéndez and his group of some 800 Catholic colonists peacefully. Colonial records indicate that on the date they came ashore, and in gratitude for their safe arrival, the Spanish celebrated a Mass of Thanksgiving, the very first Catholic mass on American soil. According to the memoirs of Father Francisco Lopez de Mendoza Grajales, who celebrated the mass, once “the feast day [was] observed … after mass, ‘the Adelantado [Menendez] had the Indians fed and dined himself.”
“FSU researchers talk turkey: Native Americans raised classic holiday bird long before first Thanksgiving” via Kathleen Haughney of Florida State University — Native Americans were managing and raising turkeys as early as 1200 to 1400 A.D. This is the first time scientists have suggested that early Native Americans potentially domesticated turkeys in the southeastern United States. Researchers knew that turkeys had been a part of Native American life long before the first Thanksgiving in 1621. Their feathers were used on arrows, in headdresses and clothing. The meat was used for food. Their bones were used for tools, including scratchers used in ritual ceremonies. There are even representations of turkeys in artifacts from that time. However, this new research indicates turkeys were more than just a casual part of life for Native Americans of that era. For one, the groupings researchers worked on had more male turkeys than a typical flock. In a typical flock of turkeys, there are usually more females … But in the flock they examined, they found more remains of males. That would only happen if it were designed that way.
“A taste of Florida on the Thanksgiving table” via Christina Morales of The New York Times — Key lime pie is eaten in Florida all year long and served every day at bakeries, restaurants and shops solely dedicated to the dessert. Even though Florida’s season for the citrus runs from June to September, bakeries are gearing up to make thousands of pies for Thanksgiving and the December holidays, especially for customers with visitors from out of town. The home cooks who prefer to make the pie at home have already stocked up on Key lime juice. The staff at Kermit’s Key Lime Shop in Key West prepare to make at least 10 times as many pies as they would in an average week.
— A THANKSGIVING POEM —
By Kevin Sweeny
Over the river, around the I-4 construction and through Rock Spring Run woods,
First hand out the pies and then to Aunt Sarah’s house we go;
The Google map knows the way
To skip the political fray
Through the rain and quieting of the legislative show.
Over the river along I-10 and through the Aucilla woods,
Oh, how the Capital does glow!
Thanks to my team and the loyal friends we chose
And Wellesley’s kiss on the nose
Give thanks to those we work with- tell them- they might not know.
Over the river, flying down 95 and through the Matanzas woods,
I’m thankful for Babes, N+P, Dp, the G’s, 1.3%, KIE and the leadership play.
Hear the end of the recounts ring
Hurrah for Thanksgiving Day!
Over the river, ripping along Alligator Alley and Big Cypress woods,
Give thanks for what you have and send a prayer for those in Michael’s way.
Give thanks for family and friends we have found,
And for last-minute amendments inbound,
For this is Thanksgiving Day.
Over the river, stuck on 275 and through Terra Ceia woods,
For just one day may our political differences abate.
Stop! Now! Give thanks for all those you know
Donations, bills, Reps, Senators, paywalls and blogs come and go
Our time here’s short — give thanks now- you simply can’t wait.
Over the river sneaking along U.S. 1 and through the Glades woods —
Put down the Twitter, ‘insta, and ‘book today to remember why!
I’m thankful I can run!
Is this damn poem done?
I’ll be running for pumpkin pie!
— LOCAL: S. FL —
“Miami voters to choose between two City Commission incumbents, two challengers in runoff” via Jesse Scheckner of Florida Politics — Two incumbent Miami Commissioners — one sitting, the other sidelined after being arrested on numerous corruption charges — will take on an opponent each in Tuesday runoff races to decide who will represent Districts 1 and 2 through 2027. In District 1, suspended Commissioner Alex Díaz de la Portilla is taking on former Miami Zoning Board member Miguel Gabela in a rematch four years in the making. Meanwhile, incumbent District 1 Commissioner Sabina Covo will try to deflect a challenge from certified financial planner and longtime community activist Damián Pardo just eight months after winning her seat in a Special Election.
“Suspended Miami Commissioner sues challenger on eve District 1 Runoff Election” via Joey Flechas of the Miami Herald — Díaz de la Portilla is suing his challenger, Gabela, alleging that Gabela is living in a home outside District 1 and does not meet a city requirement to be eligible for the election. At the same time, Florida’s 3rd District Court of Appeal issued an opinion Monday that upends the city’s interpretation of its own charter by redefining how long someone has to live in a city district before they can qualify to run for the City Commission. The Runoff Election is Tuesday, with polls opening at 7 a.m. and closing at 7 p.m. Díaz de la Portilla’s lawsuit, filed Monday in Miami-Dade County Circuit Court, accuses Gabela of living in a single-family home just outside the District 1 boundary. Gabela has said that since August, he has lived in a duplex he owns inside the recently redrawn District 1 boundaries.
“From the highways to the airports, Broward to fund yearlong antisemitism education program” via Lisa J. Huriash of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel — To fight the surge of Jewish hatred in America as Israel continues its war with Hamas, Broward County Commissioners have agreed to spend $250,000 on a one-year pilot education campaign to fight antisemitism. Broward’s campaign comes at the request of the American Jewish Committee. AJC CEO Ted Deutch said the project will benefit the larger community. There will be a “focus on public awareness, focus on training to make sure people can really understand antisemitism and the threats that it poses to the Jewish community and the broader community; throughout history, evidence (of antisemitism is) a more significant problem in the community and society, which is why we all have to confront it.”
“You helped raise a record $34 million. See how much nonprofits got on Give Miami Day” via Michelle Marchante of the Miami Herald — People gave back big to the community on Give Miami Day this year. “This was the biggest, boldest day of giving in our community’s history,” said Rebecca Fishman Lipsey, president and CEO of The Miami Foundation. “We saw increases not only in dollars raised, but in the number of participants and donations given. What a proud and important accomplishment for Miami. So many partners made this day magical, and we can’t thank them enough.” The Miami Foundation says 46,619 donors raised $34,103,878 for more than 1,000 nonprofits. The total money raised, through philanthropic support of 96,473 donations, surpassed the event’s $30 million goal. The previous Give Miami Day record was $33.4 million raised in 2021.
“Crowds? Yes. But what else can you expect at Miami, FLL airports at Thanksgiving travel?” via Vinod Sreeharsha of the Miami Herald — MIA is expecting an record 1.77 million passengers during the Thanksgiving Day travel period, from Friday, Nov. 17, to Tuesday, Nov. 28. That’s up 4.6% from last year and a daily average of 147,000 travelers. The airport expects the busiest days to be the Friday and Sunday before Thanksgiving and the Sunday after when passenger traffic is projected to approach or exceed 160,000 travelers. MIA recommends arriving three hours before your flight to give yourself enough time for parking, airline check-in, and the security screening process. It also suggests checking in online before arriving. If your flight gets delayed, be patient with airline employees as they work to reschedule and remain in contact with your airline for flight updates.
“A Publix mistake has led to a pie recall in the Keys, Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach” via David J. Neal of the Miami Herald — Publix recalled almost a month’s worth of store-label pies in Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach and Monroe counties after a packaging error created a situation that’s an annoyance for some, quite perilous for others. A box for a Publix Egg Custard Pie sold from Oct. 20 through Thursday might actually have a coconut pie. That’s aggravating for those who set their palate for egg custard, especially if the mistake is discovered by taking a bite of the pie. But those with a coconut allergy or “severe sensitivity to coconut may run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reactions,” by eating that pie. “As part of our commitment to food safety, potentially impacted products have been removed from all store shelves,” Publix Director of Communications Maria Brous said in the chain’s recall notice.
— LOCAL: C. FL —
“Orange County woman gives out Thanksgiving meals to seniors, single parents” via Liv Johnson of WESH — Cherlette McCullough and some volunteers put together more than 100 Thanksgiving meals to give out to single-parent households and older people in Orange, Osceola, and Seminole counties on Saturday. “They’re the most vulnerable populations right now, especially when it comes to food scarcity and the economy,” McCullough said. The food drive was at an office on Lee Road in Winter Park. The meals included turkey, mashed potatoes, mac and cheese and other sides. It’s a tradition McCullough started after her grandmother died from COVID-19 in 2020.
“Orange County seeks 10,000 toys for needy kids” via Stephen Hudak of the Orlando Sentinel — Until last year, Jennifer Hodges had never relied on charity for Christmas. But Hurricane Ian swamped her Orlo Vista neighborhood in late September, flooding her home. The Orange County Mayor’s Holiday Toy Drive, which has collected and distributed over 74,000 gifts to struggling families since 2011, helped Hodges find a bicycle, a scooter and some crayons for her artsy grandkids. “I was so grateful and so were they,” Hodges said. Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings set a goal of collecting 10,000 toys this year — about 500 more than last year. “Our local families, many of them, still have economic challenges and need a little extra support to make their children’s holiday joyous and bright,” he said while promoting the toy drive last week. “A single toy can do just that.”
“2023 Central Florida Thanksgiving travel tip sheet: What to do when more travelers pack airports, roads” via Amanda Rabines of the Orlando Sentinel — Officials with the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority expect Orlando International Airport to host 2.1 million passengers over 12 days that started this past Friday. That represents a 17% increase over last year. The largest group, about 186,670 strong, will pass through MCO the Saturday after Thanksgiving, the authority said. Marquez Griffin, vice president of operations, urged travelers to arrive at the ticket counter three hours before their scheduled flight. But he also suggested that people picking up passengers avoid arriving early, to help keep pickup lanes free from crowds. The Federal Aviation Administration is forecasting a peak of 46,606 flights nationwide on Wednesday. Other busy traveling days include the Friday after Thanksgiving with nearly 44,800 flights scheduled and the Sunday after with nearly 45,000, according to the FAA.
“Publix’s Todd Jones to leave CEO role; another former clerk will take over” via Austin Fuller of the Orlando Sentinel — Another former Publix store clerk will lead the Lakeland-based grocery chain as CEO after Jones steps away from the top company role to become executive Chair of the Board. Jones, who started with Publix in 1980 as a front service clerk in New Smyrna Beach, starts his new post on Jan. 1. Kevin Murphy, currently Publix’s president, will take over as CEO. Murphy got his start with Publix in 1984, also as a front service clerk in Margate in South Florida. He became a store manager in 1995. After holding other leadership roles, he became senior vice president of retail operations in 2016 and president in 2019.
“SpaceX targets late-night Falcon 9 launch Tuesday for Starlink mission from Cape Canaveral” via Rick Neale of Florida Today — SpaceX aims to send its next Falcon 9 rocket soaring into space Tuesday during another late-night launch window, with an 11:01 p.m. EST target liftoff time from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station. This mission — which will lift another payload of 23 Starlink internet-beaming satellites into low-Earth orbit — has a four-hour window with backup launch opportunities until 2:59 a.m. EST Wednesday. SpaceX publicly confirmed this Starlink 6-29 mission on Monday afternoon. For Tuesday night at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, the National Weather Service forecasts mostly cloudy skies with a low around 68 and south-southeast wind around 10 mph.
— LOCAL: TB —
“Florida legislative request would preserve rail corridor on I-4, paving way for Brightline’s expansion” via Henry Queen of the Tampa Bay Business Journal — A $50 million state appropriations request would help lay the foundation for Brightline’s planned expansion to Tampa. On Nov. 14, Rep. Karen Gonzalez Pittman sponsored a request from Hillsborough County Commissioner Michael Owen to incorporate “a modest scope of additional structure work” into a $2 billion highway construction project near Orlando that would allow for intercity passenger rail service. An approximately 11-mile stretch of Interstate 4 near Champions Gate already has the funds to be widened thanks to “Moving Florida Forward,” with the first phase of road construction expected to begin in late 2024. “We can’t afford as a county not to go after those funds for this critical infrastructure,” Owen said in an interview.
“Clearwater’s $34M renovation of beach marina is moving closer to reality” via Tracey McManus of the Tampa Bay Times — After two years of design and an act of Congress to cut some red tape, a major rebuild of the Clearwater Beach marina is moving closer to reality. With design work near completion, the city is preparing to seek construction bids and bring final costs to the City Council for a vote early next year, according to marine and aviation director Michael MacDonald. The project has evolved since it was first launched in late 2021. City staff then estimated it would cost about $18 million. But with inflation and increased construction prices, as well as an addition to rebuild the marina’s roughly 70-year-old seawall, the project is estimated at $34.6 million, MacDonald said.
“TPA ranked among the top 10 best airports in U.S. for reliability, convenience, value by WSJ” via Devonta Davis of the Tampa Bay Business Journal — Each year, WSJ ranks the 50 busiest airports in the country. The airports are separated into large and mid-size categories based on how many passengers they flew in 2022. TPA was ranked No. 10 for best mid-size airports, ranking high in security clearance, baggage claims and on-time departure. This year, the scores were primarily weighted on reliability, value and convenience measures. Using these metrics, TPA received an overall score of 66.1. In total, TPA was given 74.5 points for its value and convenience. One metric considered was the cost of TPA’s UBERx fares to the city, which, on average, were $23. Another was its availability of 86 nonstop destinations in 2022.
— LOCAL: N. FL —
“Ben Sasse drubs Randy Fine’s allegation of antisemitic UF professor as untrue” via Anne Geggis of Florida Politics — Sasse took aim at “endless online screaming” and released a statement that Rep. Fine’s allegation about an antisemitic professor at the state’s flagship university (UF) was untrue, and the lawmaker knew it. On Friday, the outspoken Brevard County lawmaker posted a screenshot from Gwendolyn Zoharah Simmons’ Facebook page that equated Adolf Hitler’s child killings at Auschwitz/Birkenau, Nazi labor/death camps, with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s “ongoing slaughter” in the Gaza Strip. “A @UF professor is teaching that Israel eradicating Hamas is like Germany eradicating Jews,” Fine posted on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter. “In Florida. Where there is a law that requires her termination. This has to end.”
“Blueprint may broaden scope to include affordable housing land-buying program in Tallahassee” via Arianna Otero of the Tallahassee Democrat — In a recent vote, a majority of the Blueprint Board of Directors voted that sales tax revenues have a place in the capital city’s affordable housing crunch. The Blueprint Board, which is made up of all 12 city and County Commissioners, voted Nov. 7 to begin the process of potentially changing its interlocal agreement so that it can purchase land for such projects. The move comes amid a major shortage in affordable housing in Tallahassee and a push by advocates for Blueprint funding to build more. In August, the Blueprint Board voted to work with the Capital Area Justice Ministry (CAJM), which has asked for $25 million in Blueprint funds to finance the construction of 500 new affordable rental units for residents who spend more than half of their income on rent and utilities.
“36 years later, notable Milton structures will get the recognition they’ve been denied” via Tom McLaughlin of the Pensacola News Journal — Established in 1844, the city of Milton is believed to be among Florida’s 10 oldest municipalities, and its citizenry takes great pride in having much of its downtown listed in the National Register of Historic Places. But in 1987, when the Milton Historic District map was finalized, some notable structures were left outside of the district and therefore not afforded whatever protections, benefits or distinction the 117 buildings included within its boundaries have received over the years. By a 5-2 vote, the Milton City Council decided Nov. 7 to, as city documents state, “create a process for establishing local historic resources.” The amendments will be added to the existing code and, following two readings, written into the ordinance.
“City Council to consider $15 million for jail, Police Memorial Building maintenance” via Hanna Holthaus of the Florida Times-Union — A City Council Special Committee was divided on how to best face a variety of maintenance issues in the county’s jail and police administration building. The Committee, charged with studying the viability of replacing those facilities, discussed what each needed in the meantime — and how a potential $14.9 million price tag could be split over time or reduced with a new structure. Conversations surrounding the facilities officially began with the mayoral administration and Council turnover in July, and Council President Ron Salem created the Special Committee that month. Council members discussed how the jail facility, a 35-year-old building, needs may stem from a litany of potential factors: a lack of oversight from previous administrations, a lack of available funds and JSO’s prioritization of maintenance needs.
— LOCAL: SW. FL —
“After member’s arrest, Cape Coral City Council has vacancy: Here’s how to apply” via Luis Zambrano and Stacey Henson of the Fort Myers News-Press — Partially hoping to avoid a half-million-dollar bill, Cape Coral City Council chose Friday to appoint a member to the vacant District 4 seat rather than have a Special Election. DeSantis suspended Council member Patty Cummings in an executive order issued Thursday. The State Attorney’s Office, 20th Judicial Circuit, issued a warrant for her arrest on Nov. 13 on three felony charges related to election fraud. State mandates require the city to fill the seat by Dec. 16. After receiving applications, members will interview candidates from Dec. 4 to Dec. 8. Council members will vote on the final candidate on Dec. 13 as the last item on the meeting agenda, with the new Council member seated at the first meeting in January.
“Popular Holiday House returns with a new location: First Street in downtown Fort Myers” via Charles Runnells of the Fort Myers News-Press — The women of Holiday House are back at it again, putting the finishing touches on their annual gift to Southwest Florida. You won’t find that gift in its usual place this year, though. Holiday House and all its Christmas cheer have moved to First Street in downtown Fort Myers. “People need something to be excited and joyful about,” says Amanda Heidt, president of Holiday House organizers the Fort Myers Woman’s Community Club. “When you’re walking down here with your family, there’s nothing like seeing Christmas through the eyes of a child.” Holiday House ― now renamed the Holiday House Christmas Stroll ― officially opens Friday, Nov. 24, with a tree lighting ceremony at Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center.
“Most recent median home sales in Lee County at $425,000, up 10.4% from July” via USA Today Network-Florida — Newly released data for August shows that potential buyers and sellers in Lee County saw houses sell for higher than the previous month’s median sale price of $385,000. The median home sold for $425,000, an analysis of data from Realtor.com shows. That means August, the most recent month for which figures are available, was up 10.4% from July. Compared to August 2022, the median home sale price was up 9% at $425,000 compared to $390,000. Looking only at single-family homes, the $513,500 median selling price in Lee County was up 23.1% in August from $417,000 the month prior. Since August 2022, the sale price of single-family homes was up 20.8% from a median of $425,000.
— MORE TURKEY NOTES —
“Never thaw your Butterball” via Faith Durand of Slate — Cooking a traditional Thanksgiving meal is a rite of passage for most American cooks, gamified in repetition, like a tough Mario level you repeat every year until you nail it. That last castle holds the Bowser boss of a turkey, a hulking bird at least three times the size of anything we’ve cooked on easier levels. But by far the worst thing about this final boss bird is that it is invariably purchased deep frozen. Americans eat more than 40 million turkeys on Thanksgiving, and despite what you’ve heard about free-range, pasture-raised turkeys, at least 85% are sold frozen. So, the first hurdle of Thanksgiving dinner, as a cook, is getting this bird from iced over to pliable.
“Can your turkey explode? Consumer watchdogs warn about holiday cooking” via the Miami Herald — For years, fire departments in Florida have been warning that deep-frying your Thanksgiving turkey can be risky. Crews have even produced video showing what can happen when frying goes wrong. Of course, a burning bird in a forgotten oven isn’t great either. But frying comes with hazards. Like melting your skin and destroying your residence. Yes, turkeys can explode. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has issued warnings on the dangers of deep-frying turkeys for Thanksgiving. Why? A bird plopped into a cauldron of hot oil can burst into flames and spread through a property. “Only fry a turkey outside and away from your home.,” the agency advises, “and never use turkey fryers in the garage or on the porch.”
“Washing Thanksgiving turkey could spread germs, say food safety experts” via Candice Choi of The Associated Press — Food say experts say don’t wash the turkey before popping it in the oven. They say that could spread the germs lurking on your turkey in the kitchen sink or nearby food. But it’s a challenge trying to convince cooks to stop rinsing off raw poultry. “If your mother did it and your grandmother did it, and suddenly the (government) says not to wash your turkey, you may take some time to adjust,” said Drusilla Banks, who teaches food sanitation for the University of Illinois Extension. Germs that make people sick are common in the guts of healthy poultry and are legally allowed to be on raw turkey and chicken.
“How to spatchcock a turkey” via Carla Lalli Music of Bon Appétit — If you’re looking for reasons to spatchcock a turkey this Thanksgiving, ask yourself these simple questions: Do you want the bird actually to taste good? And be juicy? With perfectly browned skin? Of course, you do. This method, which disposes of the backbone so the bird can be flattened and cooked skin side up, is a game-changer. Because the turkey is butterflied, there’s more surface available for even browning, and the high cooking temperature means crackly, crispy skin. Perhaps most seductive of all, a 12-pounder cooks in 90 minutes. Repeat: 90 minutes. That’s half the time of your old-fashioned roast.
—”Who needs turkey?” via Melissa Clark of The New York Times
“How to avoid the seven worst holiday table décor mistakes” via Rebecca Malinsky of The Wall Street Journal — For many Americans, Thanksgiving will mark the first time they are setting the table for a holiday dinner party in quite some time. Here are some mistakes that can derail a holiday dinner party. 1. To make the evening feel special, a table needn’t be covered in brown and orange linens, pilgrim figurines, and gourds galore. 2. A surplus of decorative objects will crowd both the victuals and the visitors. 3. A Thanksgiving feast deserves better than paper plates. 4. While many of us have been waiting years to dust off Grandma’s wedding china, don’t feel the need to use every teacup and dessert spoon. 5. Don’t have a tablescape that is too tall for conversation. 6. Avoid seating people too close or too far apart. 7. Pumpkin spice candles or cinnamon-scented pinecones create unappetizing olfactory confusion.
“How jellied cranberry sauce is made” via Christina Morales of The New York Times — Last year, Ocean Spray sold 75 million cans of jellied cranberry sauce, with the bulk of sales — 85% — occurring in the holiday season. Some of that popularity can be attributed to younger millennials and members of Generation Z, who are taking over Thanksgiving plans from their older relatives, said Joan Driggs, a vice president at IRI, a marketing research company. They’re also doubling or tripling up on the cans as they host other small Thanksgiving celebrations, like Friendsgivings, before the actual meal. About 1,100 farms grow cranberries in the United States, and the crop is estimated to produce around 8.3 million barrels or about 830 million pounds of cranberries, according to Karen Cahill, the marketing director of the Cranberry Marketing Committee.
“Hold the cranberry sauce: Items you can’t carry on a plane for Thanksgiving” via Mark H. Bickel of the Fort Myers News-Press — ’Tis the season. Starting with Thanksgiving and lasting until New Year’s Day, many of us will eat, drink and be merry. If your holiday celebrations take place away from Southwest Florida and require a plane ticket to join family and friends in the revelry, then it is important for you to know what the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will not allow passengers to carry on a flight. According to the TSA website, “If you can spill it, spread it, spray it, pump it or pour it, and it’s larger than 3.4 ounces, then it should go in a checked bag.”
“Thanksgiving food is showing up in unusual dishes — turkey ice cream, anyone?” via Charles Passy of The Wall Street Journal — Increasingly, restaurants of all kinds are getting in on the Thanksgiving act, creating mashup items that combine various elements of the holiday meal. At Socarrat, a Spanish restaurant with locations in New York City, a Thanksgiving paella is on the menu, featuring turkey, butternut squash and green beans, among other items. At Burrito Union, a Mexican restaurant in Duluth, Minnesota., November is all about the Thanksgiving burrito, filled with turkey and the traditional sides. And at King David Tacos, another New York City establishment, the current favorite is the Cranbirdy Taco, a breakfast offering with turkey sausage, sweet potatoes, eggs and cheese, accompanied by a cranberry salsa.
“It’s Thanksgiving. Will Ozempic make it better or worse?” via Dani Blum and Callie Holtermann of The New York Times — Tensions are high. Plates are full. Families may be quick to judge. What happens when weight loss drugs collide with Thanksgiving? While other holidays draw people away from the table with religious services or gift-giving, there are no such distractions on Thanksgiving, said Amy Bentley, a food historian at New York University. “It really is just the meal,” she said. “That’s it, that’s the holiday.” Dr. Scott Hagan, an assistant professor of medicine at the University of Washington who studies obesity, said patients ask him if they can skip doses of Ozempic or similar drugs before a food-focused event like Thanksgiving. He advises them not to, for a few reasons: For people with diabetes, missing a dose of Ozempic and then consuming a high-carb meal could lead to a blood sugar spike. And when people restart their doses, they can experience more intense side effects.
— TOP OPINION —
“Ananth Prasad: Infrastructure’s role in fueling Florida’s economic growth” via Florida Politics — Investing in infrastructure has a direct correlation with economic growth and job creation. Currently, Florida creates 1 in every 11 jobs in the nation and welcomes $4.48 million per hour in income migration. By expanding and improving transportation networks, Florida can continue to attract businesses and talent, facilitate trade and stimulate economic activity, leading to increased employment opportunities and enhanced productivity. By focusing on the Florida 2030 Blueprint’s infrastructure goals and the strategic recommendations of the Florida Trade & Logistics 2030 Study, Florida’s business community and policymakers have the opportunity to significantly influence a well-planned infrastructure network in Florida that will propel our economy to the global top 10 and ensure our communities are able to support the continued growth. Florida Chamber’s Infrastructure Coalition is focused on creating long-term investments in Florida’s infrastructure to maximize Florida’s economic growth.
— OPINIONS —
“Among the things I didn’t learn in school — the value of ‘revisionist history’” via Mark Woods of The Florida Times-Union — I doubt I was told that the Wampanoag had been there for thousands of years or that this wasn’t the indigenous people’s first contact with Europeans, or that they were wary of the new settlers but formed a tenuous alliance for strategic purposes, or that this peace was short-lived. I also didn’t learn that historians say similar gatherings already had happened earlier and elsewhere — including when Pedro Menendez de Aviles and Spanish settlers founded St. Augustine in 1565 and ate with the natives who lived there. Not that I was taught the Pilgrims or Pedro Menendez discovered America. It brings to mind something Jennifer Grey, public services coordinator for Florida State College of Jacksonville’s libraries, said about history: “Beware of simple stories.”
— INSTAGRAM OF THE DAY —
— ALOE —
“Be thankful! Driving to Thanksgiving gatherings is cheaper this year” via Charley Blaine of TheStreet — The national average price of gasoline is just under $3.33 a gallon, according to the AAA. The national average has come down for 59 of the last 61 days. And two days where prices didn’t fall? There was no price change. If you’re planning to drive 200 miles one-way for the holiday with maybe 50 miles of incidental driving at your destination, your gasoline bill for the 400-mile trip may be around $60. A year ago, the cost would have been about $65. (Not including meals and snack breaks.) Eleven states, in the South and Midwest, are showing statewide averages under $3 a gallon.
“The 32 rules of Thanksgiving touch football” via Florida Politics — A Nerf ball is OK, but you should own a leather football … It’s two-hand touch. One-hand touch is for lazy people who buy turkey sandwiches from vending machines. … Two completions are a first down. Not as simple as it sounds — just ask the 2012 Jacksonville Jaguars. … The ground will probably be squishy with cold mud, and someone in your family will fall face-first and ruin their Thanksgiving outfit. This is not cause for alarm. This is the highlight of the game … It’s OK to play with kids, but don’t baby them. Just because your 7-year-old niece plays quarterback doesn’t mean you can’t intercept her screen pass and run it back for a touchdown. She’s got to learn sometimes not to throw into triple coverage.
“25 more rules of Thanksgiving family touch football” via Jason Gay of The Wall Street Journal — You absolutely do NOT need a football uniform to play Thanksgiving Family Touch Football. Meanwhile, your cousin wearing the game-used Dolphins jersey is going to run into a tree. Just like the 2019 Dolphins. Resist the temptation to play “Parents vs. Children.” It’s a cute idea, but if the children are any good, it always ends up with at least four parents in urgent care. Dad will throw at least one pass that he’ll loudly say reminds him of his “high school glory days.” Mom is the true athlete of the family. Everyone knows this. No, those aren’t infants crying inside the house. Those are Bears and Lions fans watching the Bears-Lions Thanksgiving game. No Juuling or vaping on the field.
“World on a string” via Nathan King of Air Mail News — In 1924, Macy’s asked Tony Sarg, the most acclaimed puppeteer in America, to help with their Thanksgiving Day Parade. In a stroke of genius, Sarg suggested introducing inflatable balloons to the parade. He was certain these upside-down marionettes would turn the event into a living theater. The procession of smooth, dreamlike forms would float through the canyons of New York, enchanting adults and children alike not with the commercial appeal of today’s Macy’s parade but with the distended crudeness of a child’s fantasy liberated from the pages of a sketchbook and filled with gas. That year, the Macy’s parade featured balloons of Felix the Cat, a 60-foot-tall toy soldier, and a 20-foot-long elephant, all manufactured by the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company in Akron, Ohio.
“‘Thanksgiving’ review: Gobble, gobble, gasp” via Glenn Kenny of The New York Times — The origin of this seasonal slasher is in an ersatz trailer the horror filmmaker Eli Roth made for the portmanteau movie “Grindhouse” in 2007. The two lurid features directed by Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino were separated by a series of teasers for imaginary movies concocted by like-minded pals of the filmmakers, also including Rob Zombie and Edgar Wright. Believe it or not, Roth’s feature-length version of “Thanksgiving” is the third such trailer to get its Pinocchio-esque real-movie wish. Thanksgiving in Plymouth, Massachusetts, is celebrated by two families, one lower-middle class and one affluent. The turkey and pie are interrupted in both households by the run-up to an early Black Friday sale at the big box store owned by the affluent clan. The store is overrun by a mob of unusually lumpen bargain hunters, and the riot that ensues is a bloody doozy, coming off like an amalgam of George A. Romero and Jean-Luc Godard. No, really.
To watch the trailer, please click the image below:
“This year’s Black Friday bonus: Falling prices” via Gwynn Guilford of The Wall Street Journal — Consumers are spending more on experiences such as travel and concerts, reducing demand for goods. Store shelves also are amply stocked — thanks to a lessening of the pandemic-era supply disruptions that triggered shortages last year. More broadly, overall inflation has declined significantly as the economy shows signs of cooling, from slower job growth to sluggish retail spending last month. Retailers such as Walmart say an era of price hikes is fading. Adobe, which tracks online sales through its analytics arm, predicts holiday discounting will hit record highs as retailers struggle with the uncertain outlook for consumer spending. It forecasts that toys, electronics, TVs and furniture will see the most aggressive price cuts.
— HAPPY BIRTHDAY —
Celebrating today is state Rep. Rick Roth, former U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney, our friend Gina Spencer, and the exceptional Rick Wilson.
Sunburn is authored and assembled by Peter Schorsch, Phil Ammann, Daniel Dean, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, and Drew Wilson.