If you’re from overseas or across the United States, or you’re just too lazy to pack like me, then you might be in need of a couple things to do on or near campus over Thanksgiving Recess. Well, you came to the perfect place.

Black Friday

Grab someone else who’s on campus—if anyone’s around, that is—and head on over to a mall like Cambridgeside Galleria for some amazing sales the Friday after Thanksgiving Day (the 24th this year). You might get trampled in the process, but the new clothes you got as a steal will be so worth it.

Get that bod you always wanted

Thanksgiving Recess is the ideal time to take advantage of the usually at-maximum-capacity MAC and Hemenway. Get yourself back into shape after basically having no time to hit the gym during the semester, and especially after stuffing your face with Turkey stuffing.

Write a letter back home

Even though you’re not going to be physically with your family if you stay on campus, try to keep in touch. Take a couple minutes out of your day and make a nice card for your relatives—maybe tell them what college has been like, what you miss about home, what you are looking forward to the next semester, what you are scared of (aka switching into a double). Don’t be afraid to be a little cheesy. Embrace the wholesomeness.

Stay in

Whoever said it’s boring to stay in bed all day, curled up with four blankets, hot cocoa, and a cliche book or Netflix show clearly doesn’t know how to live. After an exhausting three months on campus, we all need some downtime. Recharge before we jump right back into … *scary music rumbles in the background* … reading period.

“Dine in presidential style” for a night

The Franklin Delano Roosevelt Foundation at Adams House is hosting a Thanksgiving Eve Reception at the new and improved FDR suite (B-17) on Wednesday, November 22nd from 4.30 p.m. to 6:15 p.m.. Sign up is full as of right now, but if you check this link out you might be able to get on the waiting list.

Get in the spirit and volunteer

Y-2-Y and Harvard Square Homeless Shelter are always looking for volunteers to staff their shelters, especially during the break when many regular volunteers are not in town. Visit their websites and sign up for a shift!

Get cultured

Although the Harvard Art Museums are closed on Thanksgiving Day, they are free during the rest of the recess. Take a visit, analyze some pieces of art, and feel 10 times smarter than you did before. Gain some knowledge to impress your friends when you rave about Ancient Mediterranean and Near Eastern Bronzes (a special collection on display).

Movie night

No time to watch the latest blockbusters during the semester? Thanksgiving Recess is a perfect time to do just that! Head over to a movie theater in Boston with friend for a chance to see movies everyone is talking about.

Get in the Christmas spirit?

Visit Boston’s iconic Faneuil Hall Marketplace to enjoy the holiday lights and tree on display already. (Yes, it is November.) While the Marketplace is closed on Thanksgiving day, it will be open to visitors and shoppers alike on Friday. After shopping, head over to the Winter Holiday Market on City Hall Plaza. Enjoy an ice-skating rink, hot chocolate, and small vendors.


Get together with other friends staying on campus and prepare a wholesome “Thanksgiving” meal. Whether you bake your own cookies or steal them from the dining hall, this meal can be a great time to reconnect with your friends after the rush of midterm season.