living in: alice’s restaurant

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Thanksgiving movies are a bit thin on the ground, so when I remembered the 1969 movie Alice’s Restaurant based on Arlo Guthrie’s classic song, my belly was instantly filled with happy-hippie turkey goodness. No one does a big, communal feast like the counter culture revolution, so this Thanksgiving, take a trip back to 1969 and tag along with Arlo as he celebrates in a converted church with his long-haired pals. — Amy Merrick

1. Antique Stained Glass Church Window, $975; 2. Nevin Flatware, $36/set of 5; 3. Wine Barrel Chandelier, $1598; 4. Club Monaco Felt Hat, $130; 5. Spode Turkey Platter, $104; 6. Antique Pew, $2250; 7. Rag & Bone Durham Boots, $495; 8. Velvet Pumpkin, $17; 9. Turkey Salt and Pepper Shakers, $15; 10. Iron Acorn, $20

The second set of stills and roundup continues after the jump . . .

Alice turns out the most delicious looking homespun style; long communal tables and walls decked with garlands of leaves make for an ideal Turkey Day. She lives and entertains in a converted church and owns a small-town restaurant filled with natural, simple essentials. Let’s take a page out of her book this year and host Thanksgiving with a hippie spirit at heart.

1. Copper Pot Hanging Rack, $509; 2. Antique Weather-Vane Arrow, $695; 3. Horn Bowl and Spoon, $28; 4. Boulder Mug, $10; 5. Linen Apron, $78; 6. Pepper Mill, $29; 7. Recipe Box, $24; 8. Vintage Creamer, $25; 9. Cheese Board, $37; 10. Wooden Bangle, $33; 11. Striped Tablecloth, $98

  1. Awesome roundup! I had no idea there was a movie based on the song.

  2. Holly says:

    Best Thanksgiving carol ever!

    That’s Mathew Broderick’s dad playing the trumpet.

  3. anjie joon says:

    gotta love this quirky old film. thanks for highlighting it so fantastically. maybe we’ll download it for post turkey-feast-coma viewing….

  4. David Raine says:

    Love it all, just the look is great.

  5. katie says:

    That little iron acorn is so sweet! And that wooden recipe box. Love!

  6. Such a fun post. You did a great job! Have a great week.

  7. Shani says:

    I went to college just around the corner from that dear old church. Thanks for taking me back, if not all the way to 1969.

  8. On Thanksgiving, I’ve been home and abroad, with family and alone, eaten the full course and entirely abstained, but the one constant has always been listening to Alice’s Restaurant. Thanks Amy for bringing it to me as only you can : )

  9. book_gal says:

    I love this movie and Arlo! This took me back to high school when I discovered this movie with my hippy boyfriend. *sigh* love it!

  10. Emily Havlik says:

    So glad you did this! My Mom and I listen to Alice’s Restaurant every Thanksgiving while we make pie. It’s one of my favorite traditions.

  11. Sarah says:

    I worked at Alice’s Restaurant when it moved from Stockbridge to Lennox back in the 70s. So nice to be reminded of those somewhat crazy times.

  12. Sydney says:

    This seriously made my day! Our local radio station plays Alice’s Restaurant 4 times throughout the day and I think it’s the only time of the year you can get all 5 of us quiet at once! I had no idea there was a movie based on it.. I have to get it for the family vault!

  13. Neada B says:

    Alice’s restaurant has a special place in my heart because I was born in Great Barrington–only a few miles away from the church and have always felt a kinship to it’s hippy goodness. Thanksgiving just isn’t the same without hearing Arlo sing…and yes, I am 35 years old and I think Arlo is dead sexy!

  14. Howard Bannister says:

    Horrible movie, but you’ve brought all its best qualities! If you make it through the movie, you deserve to buy yourself a treat.

  15. Gillian H says:

    had to comment since I’m having Thanksgiving at my aunt and uncle’s who live just a few miles from the Guthrie Center (featured in the first photo)! See I’m in good company in the berkshires!!!

  16. Katie says:

    Our Thanksgiving “Alice’s Restaurant” experience is very similar to Sydney’s. It reminds me of such good times!
    ♫ You can get anything you want at Alice’s Restaurant ♫

  17. Jodi says:

    Loved the record and the movie (with its awesome soundtrack), both of which made their way to Australia to be adored by hippie teenagers like myself in early 70s. Found a copy of the DVD recently and it transported me right back.

    So glad to see it covered in the “Living In…” section, a favourite of mine!

    Jodi. Sydney

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