2019 Thanksgiving Events & Buffets on the Outer Banks
by Jessie S.
Thanksgiving is a wonderful time of the year for friends and family to gather together and celebrate everything they are thankful for… and there are plenty of reasons to be thankful that you’re spending Thanksgiving here on the Outer Banks (check out our list!) If you’re planning to visit the OBX during Thanksgiving week this year, we’ve compiled a handy list of great holiday events you may be interested in attending as well as a list of restaurants serving up a delicious Thanksgiving meal!
*We will continue to update this site as we learn about more events and dining options!
Local Thanksgiving Week Events
Tipsy Turkey Beer Mile
On Wednesday, November 27th at 11 AM, head to the Outer Banks Brewing Station to celebrate and participate in their annual Tipsy Turkey Beer Mile! This 21+ event hosted by the OBX Running Company is all about fun. Runners compete in a run-drink-run-drink-run-drink style race in quarter mile intervals and are encouraged to wear costumes (there will be prizes awarded to the most creative!) At the conclusion of the race, there will be a backyard party at the Brewing Station! Register online here for $33.00. Walk-up registration is available up to 15 minutes before the race begins but there are only 100 spots open so register early to guarantee your participation!
Hangin’ With Santa & Kites With Lights
Hangin’ With Santa & Kites with Lights is a 2-day event perfect for getting in the Christmas mood. On Friday, November 29th and Saturday, November 30th, take the kids to Kitty Hawk Kites at Jockey’s Ridge Crossing in Nags Head for a chance to meet Santa! After getting their picture taken, your kids can hang out with a few of Santa’s elves while trying out some classic toys. On Saturday, the event will be even more magical as you watch the Solar Christmas tree lighting and enjoy a display of huge 19-to-30-foot kites decked out in holiday lights! Plus there will be cocoa and cookies!
Winter Lights Grand Illuminations Ceremony
The annual Grand Illuminations event marks the beginning of the Winter Lights display at the Elizabethan Gardens in Manteo. On the opening night, not only will you enjoy the gorgeous light display but there will be a holiday choir, refreshments, marshmallow roasting, fire pits on the lawn and seasonal sales in the gift shop. The event lasts from 6 PM to 9 PM on November 29th. Admission costs $15 for adults, $10 for kids aged 6-17, and $7 for kids 5 and under. Garden members and friends of members are eligible for discounted rates.
Winter Lights at the Elizabethan Gardens
For a little post-Thanksgiving fun to really bring out the holiday spirit, visit the Elizabethan Gardens beginning November 30th. Kids from “one to ninety-two” will love this enchanted display of festive holiday lights. As you wander through the paths around the garden, you’ll experience the magic of a true winter wonderland with Christmas trees, holiday décor and thousands upon thousands of glowing lights. Tickets are $11 for adults, $9 for ages 6-17, and $6 for children 5 and under. Tickets can be purchased in advanced online or at the door. The final tickets of the night are sold at 8:15 PM and since this display is outside, it is subject to weather cancellations. Even if you’ve been in the past, this is a display that you should see year after year!
Restaurants Providing Thanksgiving Feasts
BJ's Carolina Café in Jarvisburg is a family-owned restaurant serving up delicious comfort food—a great place to visit for a tasty Thanksgiving buffet! Their annual Thanksgiving lunch will be served on Thanksgiving day from 11 AM - 3 PM and reservations can be made by phone at (252) 491-5222. Choose from menu items like turkey, glazed ham, roast beef and fried flounder along classic sides like mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, corn pudding, and macaroni and cheese, just to name a few!
Red Sky Café is a wonderful café in Duck that serves a delicious Thanksgiving buffet every year. To start, sample a selection of soups and salads including She Crab Bisque, Caesar Salad and Bacon & Red Bliss Potato Soup. The main dish options include roasted turkey, prime rib, shrimp and grits, topped oysters, ham and crab cakes. There are plenty of sides too, of course, ranging from green beans and oyster dressing to collard greens and candied sweet potatoes. Don't forget a homemade dessert! The cost for adults is $29.95 and the cost for kids 12 & under is $14.95. Coffee and tea is included in the price but there are plenty of specialty cocktails available for purchase! Lunch is served from 10:30 AM to 4:00 PM and reservations are recommended by calling (252) 261-8646.
The annual buffet at Argyles in Kitty Hawk features a selection of meats (including Turkey and Shrimp) along with dozens of classic and unique side items. There are also soups, appetizers and a large dessert menu with plenty of classic pies! Those 21 and over can also indulge in a fancy Thanksgiving Martini with flavors ranging from candy corn to spiced cider. The buffet will cost $31.95 for adults and $14.95 for children under 10.
Captain George’s in Kill Devil Hills is no stranger to offering luxurious buffets. However, their annual Thanksgiving buffet is one that will certainly appease any palette. They offer traditional Thanksgiving food in addition to seafood favorites like crab legs, steamed shrimp and more. Limited reservations for parties of 10 or more can be made in advance. The restaurant will open at 11:30 AM on Thanksgiving day and will cost guests $37.99.
Mako's Beach Grille + Bar
Mako's Beach Grille + Bar in Kill Devil Hills will be offering a traditional Thanksgiving feast the year with all the fixings! The full regular menu will also be served but the Thanksgiving menu will be available from 11 AM to 7 PM. Menu items include soup, chowder, and salad along with a fine selection of meat and seafood (like roast turkey, broiled crab cakes, beef shoulder, baked mahi mahi, and glazed ham). There will also be traditional sides like dressing, sweet potato casserole, collard greens, and biscuits. Don't forget about dessert! The menu cost is $34 for adults, $27 for Seniors (65+), $17 for Children (5-12) and free for any child under 5. Reservations can be made online.
Jolly Roger in Kill Devil Hills is once again hosting a wonderful annual Thanksgiving feast! The cost is just $16.95 per person and you can even take home your leftovers starting at $4.99 per pound. Dinner starts at 1:00 PM (restaurant open regular hours for breakfast) and you can make reservations ahead of time. They will be offering traditional turkey and ham along with Pamlico Sound Crab Soup, Mashed Potatoes, Traditional Dressing, Fresh Baked Rolls, Seasonal Pies, Apple Dumplings & more!
Dirty Dick's Crab House in Nags Head will be offering a great Thanksgiving Buffet! Reservations are encouraged by calling (252) 449-2722 and they will be serving from 10:30 AM to 6:00 PM. The cost for adults will be $28.99, $23.99 for seniors, and kids 10 and under can eat for $12.99. If you're feeling especially hungry, add AYCE Snow or Dungeness crab legs for an additional $12.99. You can even order to-go meals or take leftovers at a rate of $9.99 per pound (does not include AYCE crab legs). They will have a chef attended carving station with Cajun Fried Turkey, Garlic Studded Pork Loin and Prime Rib along with seafood options like Fried Shrimp, Fried Crab Lasagna, and Grilled Grouper. Sides, appetizers and desserts include Cajun Deviled Eggs, Shrimp Salad, Gator Bisque, Old Fashioned Mashed Potatoes, Southern Smothered Collard Greens, Pumpkin Pie and Key Lime Pie.
Mulligan’s Grille in Nags Head is another local favorite offering a delicious buffet for Thanksgiving! Enjoy appetizers like clam chowder and Mediterranean Salad and sides like green beans, sweet potato casserole, mashed potatoes and biscuits. The main course selections include carved turkey with gravy, beef tenderloin, Oysters Rockefeller, and lump crab cakes just to name a few! Don’t forget about the tasty desserts! The buffet will cost $32 for adults, $26 for seniors and $16 for kids 10 and under. The buffet is available Thanksgiving Day from 11 AM until 6 PM. Call for reservations.
Owens’ Restaurant, a staple of Nags Head for over 70 years, offers an annual southern coastal Thanksgiving Feast. Enjoy a buffet with dozens of menu items including a fine selection of meat and seafood including Herb-rubbed Roast Turkey, Biltmore Honey and Brown Sugar Crusted Carolina ham, Chipotle Glazed Atlantic salmon, and Seafood Napoleon w/ Shrimp & Scallops in a Lobster & Hennessy Cream Sauce. These meats are paired with time-honored accompaniments like mashed potatoes, collard greens, oyster dressing and corn pudding. There are also plenty of scrumptious desserts to choose from! The buffet costs $38.95 per person for adults, $19.95 for kids 6-12, and kids under 5 eat free. Owens' is open from 12:00 PM Noon to 8:00 PM on Thanksgiving Day. Reservations can be made starting November 1st.
Pamlico Jack's Restaurant & Bar in Nags Head is hosting its last annual Thanksgiving Day feast. The cost will be $35.00 for adults, $25.00 for seniors, $14.00 for kids aged 5-11 and free to kids 4 and under. Reservations are currently filled but walk-ins are welcome! They will have a selection of traditional Thanksgiving fare like Oven Roasted Turkey & Stuffing, Mashed Potatoes, and Deviled Eggs along with seafood dishes like Fried Popcorn Shrimp, Oysters Rockefeller, and Charred Raw Atlantic Tuna. Choose from a selection of delicious desserts like Pumpkin Pie, Oreo Dream Bars, Chocolate Mousse and an assortment of cheesecakes.
Basnight’s Lone Cedar Café is known for offering a spectacular Thanksgiving dinner every year. Located in Nags Head on the waterfront, you'll love this fantastic feast with a great view. Not only are they able to accommodate large and small parties but walk-ins are welcome! They are also now accepting reservations for the 2019 meal and interested diners should call (252) 441-5405. This year's menu includes seafood classics like shrimp & grits, Atlantic sea scallops and fried oysters as well as classic Thanksgiving meats like oven roasted turkey, slow roasted prime rib and country ham hock. Menu also includes a full variety of sides and desserts! The buffet is open from 10:30 am - 7:00 PM. The cost is $36.95 for adults, $18.95 for kids under 12 and free for kids under 5.
Pangea Tavern in Avon is having a delicious Thanksgiving feast on Thanksgiving Day! Seating times are at 2 PM, 4 PM and 6 PM and reservations are required. The cost is $32.95 for adults and $16.95 for children under 10. Diners will be able to enjoy a fine selection of meats at the carving station (baked turkey, prime rib and roasted pork) along with seafood options at the seafood buffet (steamed shrimp, raw oysters and baked salmon). Pangea will serve up traditional Thanksgiving sides, offer a full salad bar, and have plenty of desserts to choose from! Call 252-995-3800 to make your reservation.
Enjoy a Fresh Seafood Feast in Your Rental!
Outer Banks Clambake is the perfect solution for those who don't want to get the whole family ready to go out to a restaurant this holiday season. Instead, let the feast come to you! OBX Clambake will come right to your rental home, bring the ingredients, cook the meal, and clean up afterwards! Plus, Seaside Vacations guests are eligible for discounts through Club Seaside! Contact Outer Banks Clam Bake directly to work out a menu, confirm guest total, and arrange other details.
Jessie has been coming to the Outer Banks since she was just 5 years old. She loved it here so much that she finally relocated in 2018. Now her mission is to show the world that the Outer Banks is an incredible place that everyone should experience. When she isn't working, you can find Jessie hanging out with her friends, chilling at home with her awesome cat, Yoji, or discovering a new Outer Banks adventure.