Sound off: Thanksgiving 2020 plans & traditions

Turkey, stuffing, pumpkin pie: each of these delicious dishes are somehow enough to drag college kids home every November to celebrate Thanksgiving. But with rising COVID-19 cases and a state-wide travel advisory, this year’s turkey day will certainly look different. We asked the Torch team about their Thanksgiving plans, and what some of their family traditions are — or would be, if this was your average year.

Photo courtesy of Element5 Digital on Unsplash

Dinner and the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade by Amanda Landwehr

I’m not a huge fan of Thanksgiving, but I always end up going home to Minnesota each year to celebrate. My family traditions usually involve waking up, watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade followed by the National Dog Show, and heading to my aunt’s house for a big family dinner. As a vegetarian, I’m not too keen on turkey, but there’s always some sort of meatless option for me to graze on. It’s a fun time to see my family, friends, and get excited for the upcoming Christmas season.

Making the desserts for friends and family by Jules Banks 

There is one tradition that has lasted throughout my family’s tumultuous and ever-changing Thanksgiving Day rituals: I am in charge of at least one dessert. Whether it’s the more traditional route of pumpkin or apple pie, or something fun and fresh like fudge brownies or sugar cookies, making desserts for my family is something I always look forward to –– mostly because I’m the one that ends up eating half of what I bring to the table. I haven’t decided what I’m making this year, but rest assured, it’ll be sweet. 

Cooking an all-vegan dinner by Kristin McKee

This isn’t a tradition, but it was one of my all-time favorite Thanksgivings. Last year, since neither of our families were hosting a huge Thanksgiving dinner, my boyfriend and I decided to make our own dinner in our apartment. Since I’m vegan, he agreed on cooking an all-vegan dinner to save time and avoid cross-contamination. We made Gardein Turk’y Cutlets, mashed potatoes, corn and Daiya mac and cheese. The both of us even dressed up for the occasion! It was nice to have a quiet, lowkey Thanksgiving at home, and because of COVID-19, we’ll likely do it again this year. 

Hunting for a Playstation 5 by Mohammad Samra 

I only have one goal for Thanksgiving: to get my hands on the incredibly elusive Playstation 5 console. Sony’s latest console officially released on Nov. 12 strictly online, but sold out in seconds. Retail stores like Target, Best Buy and Walmart have restocked throughout the week only to sell out almost instantly. Whether I have to camp online on Thanksgiving day, or in-person on Black Friday, I am determined to obtain a Playstation 5.

Thanksgiving Potluck by Ayumi Davis

Thanksgiving has never really been just a family thing for us, thus we always have friends over, or we would go to a friend’s house. Thanksgiving with 15+ people was normal, with tables and kitchen counters overflowing with all the fixings. The best parts were always later when all the bellies were full. The night would dissolve into games, movies and parents’ stories of times past shared around the room. 

All American Football by Adnan Basic

As the son of European immigrants, I’ve never been too big of a fan of football. I prefer sports like soccer and basketball which are more prominent overseas. However, there’s just a certain kind of magic about games played on Thanksgiving Day that makes me fascinated with the NFL. The broadcasts are all holiday themed, and the league makes sure to put on some enticing matchups to really reel in viewers. Sure, it’s wrong that these players are forced to go out on the field instead of being home with their families, but there’s just something about seeing a 300 pound mountain of a man eating a turkey leg postgame that makes me get into the holiday spirit.

The Food by Santino Torres

Over the years, the family tradition has always consisted of presenting some of the same dishes every Thanksgiving. Mother prepares the ham, my aunt prepares the turkey, and other family members cover the other side dishes such as mashed potatoes, stuffing and sweet potatoes. Every now and then, mostaccioli makes an appearance on the menu, as well as potato salad and maybe even a green bean casserole. Then the best part, dessert! A few years ago I tried a very delicious cherry cobbler made by my cousin that I am still waiting for to return at the Thanksgiving dinner table!

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