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This is how astronauts celebrate Thanksgiving and other holidays in space

November 26, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

The holidays still happen in space. Astronauts have found unique and meaningful ways to celebrate Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas and New Year's Eve.

The International Space Station will host seven crew members throughout the holiday season, the most ever for the orbiting laboratory in its 20 years of having humans living aboard.

The international crew will take the day off from working on the space station and sit down for a special meal together, as well as calling home to talk with friends, family and loved ones.

"I'm very happy to be on the space station this year because I get to share American traditions with my international crew mates," Walker said.

For Hopkins, its his second Thanksgiving in space after spending the holiday on the station in 2013.

Astronauts have marked the tradition of celebrating holidays in space since the days of the Apollo mission, when the Apollo 8 crew famously shared their Christmas Eve message in a live television broadcast in 1968 by taking turns reading from the Book of Genesis in the Bible.

How these holidays are marked and celebrated is up to each individual crew and space veterans tend to share suggestions and ideas with rookies before they go up, NASA astronaut Dr. Andrew Morgan told CNN.

Although it was a busy time on the space station with multiple spacewalks and experiments on the schedule, the astronauts were able to come together for a special meal that weekend with their international crew members and talk about what Thanksgiving meant to them.

In the days leading up to the holiday, Morgan and his crew played Christmas music throughout the station and had classic holiday movies playing to create a festive atmosphere.

New Year's is a much bigger holiday than Christmas for the Russian crew, so the entire crew came together to enjoy a large meal and toast to the year ahead.

Morgan said the key to enjoying this holiday season is similar to how the astronauts celebrate in space: with planning, intention and thoughtfulness.

Morgan also shared his wish for the current crew on the space station as well as everyone on Earth.

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