2 New Jersey high school football teams play last Turkey Bowl game

CLIFTON, New Jersey (WABC) -- A North Jersey Thanksgiving Day football tradition came to an end Thursday as Clifton and Passaic high schools played their last Turkey Bowl game.

The Clifton Mustangs won big against the Passaic Indians. But the victory was bittersweet.

The Turkey Bowl has been a highlight for fans and players since 1992.

Those attending Thursday's game remembered the nostalgia, the celebration and the tradition of playing and watching high school football on Thanksgiving Day.

The morning match-up highlighted a rivalry that has bred unity between the two cities and given each year's winner bragging rights over the years.

The Thanksgiving Day tradition has also been a time when the old timers would mingle with current students and share stories about Turkey Bowl games past.

This year the marching bands from both schools were on the field at the same time, playing in perfect Thanksgiving Day harmony for one last time.

For those who came to watch, it was a bittersweet end to something they have held so dear.

The Clifton-Passaic Turkey Bowl isn't the only Thanksgiving Day game to disappear in recent years.

One reason is playoff scheduling.

Another is that the football season starts earlier now than it did in years past, and Thanksgiving Day games now happen when many of the athletes are starting to transition out of football and into winter sports.

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