November 19, 2012
Hundreds of Knox College students gathered for the traditional Thanksgiving Dinner to share turkey and stuffing, along with other dishes with more of an international flair.
Organized by Knox Dining Services, the November 14 event also involved Knox faculty, staff, and administrators who volunteered to help serve students in the Oak Room of Seymour Union and clean up afterward.
The menu consisted of turkey; smoked ham; tofurkey; apricot, apple and walnut stuffing; Mung bean and rice casserole, also known as Khichidi; Afghan sweet pumpkin curry; green beans with Shitake mushrooms; sweet potatoes with marshmallows; mashed potatoes and gravy; butternut squash and white bean stew; apple, celery, carrot and pepper slaw; cranberry salad; tossed salad; bread; four different kinds of pie; and punch and eggnog.
By the end of the evening,a total of 248 pounds of turkey breast, 132 pounds of ham, 63 pounds of tofurkey, and 10 gallons of eggnog were served to 884 people, said Helmut Mayer, director of Dining Services.
The idea behind Knox's Thanksgiving dinner, he added, is "to have an occasion that fits the original meaning of Thanksgiving, and a meal that is traditionally served on such an occasion in a family home, with an eye on the not so traditional, like vegetarian and vegan dishes not commonly part of such a meal."
Knox students said they appreciated the food and the friendly environment. For some, it was their first Thanksgiving dinner.
"I definitely enjoy being around friends and sharing a meal," said Kathryn Todd, a Knox sophomore from Chicago, Illinois (photo below, at top left). "It really brings out the diversity at Knox by bringing us all together, and I get to learn what my friends eat at their Thanksgiving dinners."
"It's my first time eating Thanksgiving dinner, and it's my first year in America, so I'm excited about it," said Gao Huaqing, a first-year student from China.
"Turkey is really interesting. I've never had it before," added Yi Qawei, a first-year student from China. "It's not a Chinese food, so it was fun to try it at Thanksgiving." (Photo above right: Yi Qawei, at left, with Gao Huaqing, at center, and Junge Huang.)
Natalia Binkowski, a Knox junior from Franklin Park, Illinois (photo below, bottom right), said: "It's great that Knox has this as a tradition. It is always awesome to see everyone and celebrate together."