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Astronauts On The ISS Will Be Working On Thanksgiving, But Feasting Too

This Thanksgiving, the astronauts on board the International Space Station (ISS) will be hard at work, but will also take the time to feast on the space version of a traditional turkey dinner, reports.

NASA astronauts usually take off from work on Thanksgiving Day, but this year, it’s work as usual for those in space. Two of the six crew members onboard the ISS are Americans: Shane Kimbrough and Peggy Whitson. But in the spirit of the holiday, all of them will be sharing the dinner table.

In a video, Kimbrough said,

We’re obviously going to be talking about what Thanksgiving means to us, what we’re thankful for, and sharing the tradition with our French and Russian colleagues.

Before dinner though, Kimbrough will be installing a new centrifuge in the Cell Biology Experiment Facility, working with Russian Sergey Ryzhikov. They will be operating an ultrasound to do baseline scans for the Fluid Shifts study, which intends to investigate why astronauts’ eyesight change after spaceflight.

Andrei Borisenko and Oleg Novitskiy, on the other hand, will be unloading cargo from the Soyuz spacecraft and replace a control panel on the Russian Service Model. Thomas Pesquet, on the other hand, is set to read a children’s book on camera for kids on Earth as a part of “Story Time from Space.” Pesquet will also take measurements for the AquaMembrane project.

Then the six crew members will gather in the Zvezda Service Module to celebrate a traditional Thanksgiving. Their meal won’t be the usual fare though. The astronauts have turkey, green beans, candied yams, mashed potatoes and more. They’ll also have pouches of sweet tea, as alcohol is forbidden on the ISS, and packets of cherry-and-blueberry cobbler for dessert.

Kimbrough says he plans on spending the rest of his Thanksgiving watching American football, which he says is how he completes the holiday. “Thanksgiving in my world is not complete without some football, so we’re going to have mission control send up some live football games for us to watch to complete the experience of Thanksgiving.”

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