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Where to go for Thanksgiving dinner in South Mississippi if cooking isn’t your thing

This promotional image from Cracker Barrel shows it’s menu for Thanksgiving, which is the busiest day of the year for the chain restaurant.
This promotional image from Cracker Barrel shows it’s menu for Thanksgiving, which is the busiest day of the year for the chain restaurant. Cracker Barrel Old Country Store

Nearly one in 10 adults will eat Thanksgiving dinner at a restaurant this year, according to the National Restaurant Association, and another 4 percent will get takeout from their favorite restaurant.

In South Mississippi gumbo and crab legs are just as likely to be on the menu as turkey and stuffing.

A survey of Coast eateries shows many restaurants will be open on Thanksgiving:

All 12 casinos will have turkey on the buffets, and most will have crab legs and steaks or prime ribs. Look for a big helping of Southern specialties, too, such as oyster stuffing, black eyed peas and sweet potato praline casserole. Palace Casino will have fried green tomatoes and collard greens for a Southern flair. Lobster bisque and Cajun fried turkey are on the buffet at Boomtown and for those who prefer seafood to turkey, Hard Rock’s buffet features grilled salmon with pineapple salsa along with those royal reds.

Casino restaurants also will be open and featuring special menus. This year sports betting is added to the menu, so fans can watch football games while eating at Michael Patrick’s at Golden Nugget. Or steak could be for Thanksgiving at one of the many casino steakhouses.

Local restaurants are less likely to be open on Thanksgiving, but they’re out there.

- Diamondhead Country Club is serving Thanksgiving Day buffet from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. and reservations are required (228-255-2918).

- Both White Pillars and Cora’s Restaurant at The White House Hotel in Biloxi will serve traditional Thanksgiving fare.

- For family fun, the restaurants at Margaritaville Resort Biloxi will be open, followed by games for all ages.

Among those closed will be Half Shell Oyster House, McElroy’s seafood restaurants in Biloxi and Ocean Springs, Mugshots, Patio 44, Salute, Scranton’s Restaurant, Shaggys, The Reef, The Shed, Trapani’s Eatery and Woody’s Roadside in Biloxi and Ocean Springs.

Many national chain restaurants will be open on Thanksgiving Day, according to HolidayShoppingHours.com. Here are the ones serving turkey dinner options:

  • Cracker Barrel Old Country Store (Thanksgiving is the busiest day of the year!)

  • Denny’s

  • Golden Corral

  • Applebee’s (select locations)

  • IHOP

Other chain restaurants open are:

  • Buffalo Wild Wings

  • Dickey’s BBQ Pit

  • Hooters

  • McAllister’s Deli

  • Ruby Tuesday

  • Saltgrass Steak House

  • TGI Friday’s

  • Twin Peaks

Closed are most Arbys, Burger King, Chick-fil-A, Chili’s, Chuck E. Cheese’s, Dairy Queen, Firehouse Subs, Five Guys Burgers, Honeybaked Ham Stores, Jimmy John’s, KFC, Lenny’s Sub Shop, Logan’s Roadhouse, Mellow Mushroom, Olive Garden, Panda Express, Raising Cane’s, Red Lobster, Smoothie King, Subway, Taco Bell, Texas Roadhouse and Whataburger.

There’s always pizza — Domino’s, Papa John’s, Pizza Hut and Little Caesars are open on Thanksgiving for those who’ve had enough turkey and aren’t interested in leftovers.

Want to add a restaurant to this list? Email online @sunherald.com.

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