Art by Autumn Hardwick
Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and the smell of pumpkin pie and cinnamon spice will soon once again fill the air. Students said they are looking forward to a break, filled with their favorite holiday traditions and quality time with family and friends.
Pepperdine’s Thanksgiving break begins Nov. 23, and students like sophomore Kailey Echeverria said they are planning where they will go for the day of gratitude, who they will celebrate with and what festivities they will take part in.
“Every year I go to my aunt’s house for a big traditional family dinner,” Echeverria said. “For the rest of the week, I’m looking forward to going thrifting with my hometown friends.”
Many students, such as sophomore Avery Encalade said they use the break as a time to catch up with family as well as friends from home. Encalade said she looks forward to her family’s yearly kickball game.
“I have a big family at home in Texas, so our tradition is to come together for a game of kickball before our Thanksgiving dinner,” Encalade said.
Along with fun festivities, sophomore Ava Moreno said she uses Thanksgiving as a time to reflect on blessings and share memorable moments with her loved ones at home in San Diego.
“My family and I always say what we are grateful for before the meal,” Moreno said. “We also spend quality time together cooking and playing board games.”
From big family games to small family dinners, sophomore Timbrelee Vick said she cherishes the time to rest her mind before finishing out the semester.
“I’ll be going home to Hemet for the break,” Vick said. “We just have a small family dinner, but it’s nice to spend the time relaxing at home.”
Along with celebrating Thanksgiving over break, sophomore Lily Young said she is anticipating the start of the Christmas shopping season and is planning to shop Black Friday sales at her favorite local mall in Texas.
“My friends and I always go black Friday shopping,” Young said. “We make it a tradition to get there early so we can get the best sales.”
Even if students can’t go home to see family, some students, such as junior Delaney Ermshar, are finding ways to uphold traditions while making new ones with friends. Ermshar will be cooking her own “Friendsgiving” meal on campus.
“My friends will be coming to visit me at school,” Ermshar said. “We are going to make our own dinner here and enjoy Malibu.”
Pepperdine’s Thanksgiving break is going to be adjusted to a full week in fall 2023, but, for this year, the break will still be three days. Due to the short period of the break, some students, such as junior Phillip Young, said they are staying on campus for the holiday while finding ways to remain connected to home.
“I have a Friendsgiving meal with my high school friends the day before Thanksgiving,” Young said. “We started the tradition in high school, and even though we are all at different colleges now, we have kept it going over Zoom.”
For those who stay on campus for Thanksgiving, senior Garrett Le, son of University Registrar Hung Le, said his family hosts a potluck for all Pepperdine students. The dinner is held at the Le’s on-campus residence on Thanksgiving day.
“If anyone needs a place to go, my family hosts a dinner for Pepperdine students who don’t go home,” Le said. “Last year we had almost 50 students come for the potluck.”
In addition to the Thanksgiving potluck, Le said his mother hosts a cookie gathering every Sunday of December leading up to Christmas and invites students to come and join his family’s tradition.
“My mom spends hours every weekend in December making cookies for everyone,” Le said. “So, if you’re free, she would love for you to stop by.”
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