Thanksgiving brings various traditions to MSU

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With Thanksgiving this Thursday, Michigan State students are planning on celebrating the holiday with their family and friends. Students with international backgrounds have different ways of celebrating the American tradition.

Chesca Alvarez, a senior from Novi, has a different Thanksgiving than everyone else.

“My family actually eats Japanese food during Thanksgiving so we don’t really have, like, the typical Thanksgiving,” she said.

While she can’t do Thanksgiving with her parents because they are in the Philippines, she gets to celebrate Thanksgiving with her siblings.

“Whenever my siblings all come together, it’s usually the only time that we’re together,” she said.

Nataree Leelapatree, a senior from Bangkok, Thailand, doesn’t have a Thanksgiving tradition, but said she still celebrates with friends.

She said this is her fourth year celebrating ‘Friendsgiving.’

“In Thailand we don’t really have Thanksgiving,” she said. “All Thai students here, we just get together and do ‘Friendsgiving’ since were away from home.”

Masters student George Chidziwisano, a student from Miami, spends his holiday with friends, he said.

“Normally, we just catch up on each others lives and cultures,” he said.

For American students, celebrating with family can mean two things: happiness and peace or craziness and insanity.

Senior, Starria Coppins from Detroit, experiences family bonding first-hand each Thanksgiving.

“We normally would go to my grandma’s house and she would always cook, but now she’s, like, reaching 90 so we just go to my aunt’s house instead,” she said.

Coppins said her and her cousins will stall before it’s time to eat.

“(We) get together like early early in the morning, like before everyone starts cooking, and we’ll, like, go to the store, but we’ll just be driving around and come back before it’s time to eat,” she said.

Junior Paige O’Grady, from Coldwater, has experienced that dreaded cooking mistake, she said.

“One time my mom forgot to put sugar in the pumpkin pie and that was very funny,” she said. “She was very sure she put it in, se we’re eating it and telling her it doesn’t taste good. She didn’t realize until she tried it that it was really bad.”

Christine Kanerva, a senior from Pinckney, has a different Thanksgiving side dish than usual on one side of her family, she said.

“Well this might sound weird, but actually my family orders Subway for Thanksgiving,” she said. “So that when we go to the other side of the family, we can have the turkey.”

Joshua Langford, a sophomore from Huntsville, Alabama, doesn’t have any crazy Thanksgiving traditions, but gets to spend time with his family.

“We just kind of sit down and eat together with all my family members, nothing too special,” he said.

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