There were several aspects of Thanksgiving to look forward to this year: the delicious dinner, catching up with family after two years apart and returning home to be away from all the stress of finals season. The most exciting, and perhaps unconventionally superior aspect of Thanksgiving to look forward to was the chance to catch up with friends at Friendsgiving. Thanksgiving this year was on Thursday Nov. 25, with Drew students leaving for home by the Wednesday morning prior.
Many students celebrated the very family-centric holiday with new traditions and activities. The most popular trend is “Friendsgiving,” where friends get together to cook a traditional-style Thanksgiving dinner, or even just enjoy each other’s company. According to Eric Kim, a writer for the New York Times, Friendsgiving creates a safe space for those who feel uncomfortable with being at home for the holidays. Kim primarily references the LGBTQ+ community, and how Friendsgiving allows people to gather with friends that are supportive and share similar views, ensuring a comfortable and happy holiday experience.
Not every student on campus had the ease of returning home and visiting extended families. A good portion of Drew’s population are international students, or students who do not live within a travelable distance from campus. Also, some students may find it stressful, or completely unenjoyable to return home for Thanksgiving due to family drama, political discussion or an unsafe environment to return to, among other reasons.
Friendsgiving serves as a chance to take charge of a conventional holiday with deeply-ingrained norms and enjoy it however is seen fit. It can range from a large meal, a night of games and activities or observing the holiday with friends. The special aspect about it is the freedom to decide. For those people, Friendsgiving celebrations can provide an opportunity to make the most of the holiday, even without going home.
Friendsgiving serves as a chance to take charge of a conventional holiday, with deeply-ingrained norms, and enjoy it however is seen fit. It can range from a large meal, a night of games and activities or observing the holiday with friends. The special aspect about it is the freedom to decide. Whether it’s the traditional large family gathering, enjoying your friends’ company with fun games, or even celebrating by yourself with great food, there are a multitude of ways to enjoy Thanksgiving and Friendsgiving is a great option.