Harvesting Blair's unique Thanksgiving traditions


Nov. 28, 2019, 7:19 p.m. | By Boaz Yoo | 2 weeks, 2 days ago

How Blazers are celebrating this Thanksgiving season


Thanksgiving dinner brings to mind a steaming turkey sitting atop a warm table, complemented by oh-so-juicy cranberries, mashed potatoes with too much gravy and brown stuffing. But wait! Where's the chicken? The lamb? The injera? The paella? These are just a few of the culinary styles that have found their place in our fellow Blazers’ annual family Thanksgiving traditions.

Photo: Happy Thanksgiving (courtesy of Pixabay).

Blair hosts students of all backgrounds who bring unique delicacies and family traditions to their own Thanksgiving season. Junior Issac Seleshi, like many students, celebrates Thanksgiving with a festive meal that has come to include injera, a traditional Ethiopian bread. Seleshi is not alone in bringing ethnic food into the traditional Thanksgiving palate. Sophomore John Rivera, who comes from a Hispanic background, gets a mix of both American and Hispanic tastes at the Thanksgiving table. "Our family has a mix of American classics and Hispanic food," Rivera says. "We make rice and tortillas."

In keeping with the spirit of turkey pardoning, the classic Thanksgiving poultry is literally starting to make an escape from holiday tables. Junior Soella Asikoye's family started saying no to the turkey after realizing that other meats are juicier. "We tried turkey for so long, but it's just so dry," Asikoye says. "So we try chicken or lamb. Each year we try to cook with different meat."

Apart from the feast that accompanies this holiday, Thanksgiving is also a time for students to take a break from school and relax. Junior Sabontu Hassen uses this time to get together with her family. "We cook traditional foods and then we spend time with the family going shopping," Hassen says. Similarly, Asikoye's Thanksgiving week is, in one word, relaxing. "We have a few family members over and my mom would throw a holiday party," Asikoye says. "We cook food, sit down and eat, listen to holiday music, watch a movie and then go out with her friends."

While some Blazers buy turkeys, why buy a turkey when you can hunt one? Freshman Sarela Lanza's family brings in some action this holiday season. Her parents are from Bolivia and Spain, where it is a tradition for families to hunt turkeys. "In our countries, both Bolivia and Spain, we usually go out to shoot turkeys," Lanza says. "After we catch some, we give them to another family and they would clean the turkey and feather it."

While maintaining the traditional turkey dish, Lanza's multicultural family stuffs the turkey with their own Bolivian spin. They add cuñape, a soft and creamy Bolivian cheese ball , along with paella, a rich Spanish rice-and-shrimp dish, to the dinner table. "Whenever someone gets married, a new tradition comes into the family," Lanza says. "It's really great how it all comes together."

Blazers may have different backgrounds and traditions, but what unifies us during these festive times is the thread of gratitude that goes through each and every one of us. So, go out and enjoy this Thanksgiving season in your own way. But no matter how you celebrate, remember to reflect upon the people and events in your life that you are thankful for. Happy Thanksgiving!

Last updated: Nov. 28, 2019, 7:20 p.m.


Tags: culture holiday Thanksgiving Blair Blazers

Boaz Yoo. Hi. I am a staff writer for SCO. I enjoy practicing martial arts, playing tennis, and writing articles for SCO. More »

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