I believe that the biggest challenge for the Thanksgiving dinner for six for $1 challenge is going to be getting the Thanksgiving turkey. Turkeys get greatly discounted at this time of the year to bring people into the grocery stores, but since I am only working with $1 for the entire meal, even that is too expensive. While I hope that the stars align and there is a great free turkey deal out there which I can take advantage of, I also have a few backup plans to make sure that the centerpiece makes it onto the dinner table. This is how I plan to get a free turkey:

Buy A Certain Amount, Get A Free Turkey: This is the most likely way that I will be able to score a free turkey. Safeway actually has this promotion going this week where if you purchase $100 worth of food, you get a free turkey. The challenge, of course, is being able to get $100 worth of food that is free after coupons making everything free. This week there were no free deals at Safeway that made this work. While this may seem impossible, all it takes is one good sale and coupon combo. For example, if the Del Monte fruit smoothies deal was still going on, I would already have a free turkey. The hope is that there is some good sale that makes an item free so that I can purchase $100 worth of it (or even much less if I get lucky) and get my free turkey as well.

Coupon Overages: When the stars align in coupon heaven, it is actually possible to make money when you buy food. This usually entails a combination of a sale price, a manufacturer’s coupon and a Catalina coupon. What happens is that you may pay $1.00, but then you get a Catalina coupon back to purchase anything for $2.00 which results in you making $1.00 on the deal. These don’t happen often, but if one does which I can take advantage of, it should be no problem purchasing a turkey with the overages since the turkeys are discounted so much this time of the year.

Turkey Promotions: This idea was left in the comments that I had never thought of, but is an excellent idea of possibly scoring a free turkey. Some businesses with offer a free turkey this time of year to get you in the door. For example, a car dealer may offer a free turkey if you test drive one of their cars. I will be keeping a lookout for alternative ways of scoring a turkey for free as well.

The Secret Free Turkey Plan: If all else fails, I do have a secret plan of coming away with a free turkey, but I don’t want to go with this idea unless I absolutely have to. While I am pretty sure I can score a free turkey this way, it would be a bit embarrassing so I will only do it if all other options fail. I will send all the coupons from the Safeway Thanksgiving Coupon Booklet for the first person who can guess my strategy — leave your guess in the comments and I will let you know if any of you get it right 😉 Good luck!

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  1. I am curious what the secret turkey plan is..

    what area are you located in? I’m not sure..there must be some turkey promotion somewhere.

  2. @Michele — that was one of the three main options I was hoping to use, but no quality moneymakers have come my way thus far to give that a try. It was not my secret plan.

    @Harry Taylor — While I could probably do this, if I ever asked for donations, I would use it to help the food banks, not me.

    @hahn — interesting idea, but I would need a bad turkey that I bought at the store before I could do that.

    @mary — I am currently in the San Francisco Bay Area for the holiday

  3. @Dana

    Ooooh, I hadn’t thought of that. Maybe that will be my back up in case my secret plan doesn’t work 🙂

  4. Hello everyone I’m in San Jose,Ca and I’m trying to locate any company that would be willing to donate(6-turkeys and 6-hams for a Thanksgiving Meal), that going to take place at my sons elementary school on Wed. Nov.23,2010 the place that was going to donate to this cause pulled out last night because they said that they did not have enough food to go around right now! There are going to be 200 people coming to have a Thanksgiving meal-can anyone out there help me please!

  5. Are you going to sign on as a food demonstrator – say to demonstrate roasting turkeys in one of those tabletop oven thingies and tell the company you need some turkeys to practice on first before you demonstrate live in the store?

  6. @Donna

    Heh – you all are getting very creative. Love the ideas, but now I’m afraid you will all be disappointed when you actually hear my secret plan (I think most of you will go, “what? Is that all?)

  7. @Teresa

    While that would be a possibility, the goal is to give food to the food bank. Although I do want to win, I have decided that I won’t take a meal away from someone that really needs it in order to win since this is a challenge and not the reality I only have $1.

  8. Ok that was the most embaressing that I could think of. But I will definately keep track of your progress as I have been thinking about doing something like like the $1 per day idea. I have 3 in my family tho.

  9. At my kids school every year is a race to win a free turkey, my kids never won anything, but I’m thinking you are going to train your kid to win this race at school? 😀

  10. You can go to a grocery store and ask if they would donate one or more turkeys. Or go to a store like savemart and tell them you are having a fundraiser or event, what ever it is that you are going to do with the turkey and ask for a donation such as gift card to purchase the turkey with.

  11. Um, go buy the dollar amount required to get a free turkey, and keep the turkey while returning everything else???

    I’m curious to know… hihi

  12. Your backup plan on getting a free turkey would be to enter a sweepstakes to win one? Or to go to a food pantry and get a get a turkey.

  13. 1. hold a sign saying you need a turkey for thanks giving while you and your children is on a corner begging for change
    2. stand at a grocery store with your kids begging for food
    3. stand in line for the free turkey give way in your home town

  14. I this for my family I lost my job an back at home with my mom an she on a fix income thanks an enjoy your weekend an holidays

  15. Some stores give you free turkey if you buy ham (for example). Since ham is usually for Christmas, it won’t count toward your “Thanksgiving spending”, therefore making this turkey free.

  16. You’re going to dress up like a turkey and win a whole thanksgiving dinner for best costume and it only took $1 to enter. I don’t see why you don’t just use all coupons to get it. Even if stores give a free turkey for buying so much, if you use coupons it can still end up being free or $1.

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