I like holidays. Halloween. The Fourth of July. Memorial Day. Any excuse to blow things up and eat them up is a good day for me. Since I’m also a second generation geek, I’m a huge fan of made up holidays like Talk Like A Pirate Day, May the Fourth, and now, Catansgiving.
You’ve never heard of Catansgiving? Well, my geek friends, prepare for awesomeness.
If you cut enough letters out of Canadian Thanksgiving, you end up with the word “Catansgiving.” Take a look:
Because we are easily amused, we decreed Catansgiving to be on Canadian Thanksgiving. Since that’s the second Monday of October, our celebrations take place on Catansgiving Eve.
We made printables for the Catansgiving sign, ornaments, robber tree topper, hexes, and even some Catan crowns.
We started out celebrations by setting up a traditional Catanian altar to our ancestors.
We put a robber on our woody Catan Tree and surrounded it with the symbols of our people; bricks, rocks, wool, bread, and mixed white and brown sugar to represent the arid desert.
To remind our children of Catan’s fertility, we gave them a plate full of sweets with hex shaped sugar cookies for the grain, twizzler bricks, cotton candy wool, peanut butter bricks, and Toblerone mountains.
Here you can see our Catan altar, the territory sweets, and a map our our mighty island nation.
We also had multiple shapes of hexes and plenty of markers, colored pencils, and craft supplies for the kids so they could decorate hex shaped ornaments for our trees. You can’t see it in this photo, but we piled rocks, bricks, puffs of wool and pieces of bread in the planter.
Both kids and grownups enjoy coloring hexes.
Because we could, we made a crown rack of lamb. While it was tempting to make our designated Queen of Catan wear it all night, we didn’t really want to pick lamb chops out of her hair. In the foreground, you can see our roasted asparagus forests and red bell pepper roads.
In addition to the crown rack of lamb, we also had an assortment of sheep cheeses for our pasture, sliced baguettes for our fields, roasted asparagus for our forest, roasted bell peppers for our hills, mountains of hex shaped blue corn chips, a desert of roasted onions and roasted heads of garlic, plus sides from the Catan Cookbook Wood for Sheep including Settlement Salad and Settlement Pasta.
The rack of lamb came out a perfect pink medium. Alton Brown’s Crown Rack of Lamb worked perfectly on our first try.
In celebration of Catansgiving, a lot of us dressed in the traditional colors of our people; red, blue, green, yellow, or orange. One of us brought this Catan-tastic hat which was red for bricks, dark green for forests, plus decorated with ore rocks for mountains and puffs of wool for Catan’s sheep filled pastures.
You don’t need to buy a crown rack of lamb to celebrate. You can do it cheaply and easily on your own.
To kick off your own Catansgiving celebration, all you need is:
- A Catan Tree with a Robber Tree Topper
- A Catan Plate Made of Sweets
- Catan Ornaments to Decorate Your Tree and Home
- Catan Crowns for the Kids
- A Big Catan Meal (Check out the cookbook Wood for Sheep for inspiration)
- A copy of Settlers of Catan
If you’re feeling really ambitious, while the cooks are in the kitchen, have the kids and/or drunk adults color enough hexes to make an entire Settlers of Catan board. Tape it all together so that after dinner you can fish all the meeples and pieces out of your Settlers of Catan box and play a game on your home made board. If someone in your family just had a baby, adopted a child, or got married, celebrate by making both a board and an expansion pack to welcome the new member of your clan. When it’s time to clean up, you can always mount the home made board on your wall or fridge as family art.
Check out our Catansgiving Printables Post for free supplies to kickstart your holiday.