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Alternative Thanksgiving: Fun ways to share the day with friends or on your own

Thanksgiving at the Lowery 2022 (Facebook)

Nov. 21, 2023 By Jessica Militello

Thanksgiving marks the beginning of the holiday season with Christmas and New Year’s Eve not far away and with that commences the start of seeing family and friends to celebrate.

While many eagerly anticipate these gatherings, it can also be a source of anxiety for those distanced from family, whether due to strained relationships or sheer geographical distance.

If you find yourself considering a Friendsgiving or a solo escapade this Thanksgiving, here’s a curated list of top spots to celebrate in Western Queens.


Vesta Trattoria and Wine Bar 

This quaint Italian restaurant has delicious food and a cozy atmosphere that could make for a perfect get together with friends. The restaurant has a Thanksgiving Day menu that you can order to go for a gathering at home, or enjoy the atmosphere and dine in. Make sure to call and book your reservations in advance.

21-02 30th Ave., Astoria | 718-962-0910

Vesta Trattoria (Facebook)

American Brass 

If you’re looking for elegance and a waterfront view with an eclectic menu then this upscale restaurant might be perfect for Thanksgiving dinner with friends. The restaurant will be open from noon to 9 p.m.  and have quite the array of cocktails for a perfect celebration.

2-01 50th Ave., LIC | 718-806-1106

American Brass (Facebook)

Urban Vegan Roots

This restaurant is a great place to celebrate with friends if you’re vegan or just want to try something different for a change on Thanksgiving. Their food and their cocktails are delicious and they offer a fun vibe filled with art and great music. They will be serving what they call a “new traditional” Thanksgiving menu and will be open from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. It’s recommended to make reservations early before space runs out.

34-47 31st St., Astoria | 516-490-6895

Urban Vegan Roots (Facebook)

The Lowery Bar and Kitchen

The Lowery is a neighborhood gem in the area that offers a warm vibe and plenty of space for friends to get together for the holiday. They have a Thanksgiving day pre-fixe menu with something to offer for everyone and the restaurant offers a fun place to get together and enjoy each other’s company.

43-02 43rd Ave., Sunnyside | 929-208-0054

The Lowery (Facebook)

Solo Thanksgiving

The Regal UA Kaufman Astoria 

Spend your afternoon indulging in popcorn and candy while catching up on the latest movie you’ve been dying to see. The Regal is a neighborhood gem in the area and afterward there’s tons of delicious restaurants in the area to grab a meal in person or to go.

35-80 38th St., Astoria | 844-462-7342


The Wolfhound

This beloved neighborhood bar regularly hosts game and trivia nights and truly offers an environment where it feels like everyone is hanging out together regardless if you’re there with a friend or on your own. Stop by for a drink and delicious food and enjoy the day in good company.

38-14 30th Ave., Astoria | 718-204-2111

The Wolfhound (Instagram)


Every year Oliver’s offers a special Thanksgiving Day menu including plates for dine in or take out. The elegant bar frequently hosts trivia nights, live music and other events and definitely offers a warm and friendly environment for everyone to feel welcome to spend the day.

37-19 Broadway, Astoria | 718-806-1476

Olivers (Facebook)

Gantry Plaza State Park

What better way to enjoy the afternoon than basking in the beautiful Fall foliage while taking in a breathtaking view of the Manhattan skyline and visiting the famous Pepsi-Cola sign nearby. There’s dozens of delicious places to get food and dessert in the area, and it can be a fun and unique way to spend your day for the holiday.

4-44 47th Rd., LIC | 718-786-6385


*This story first published in the November issue of BORO Magazine

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