J Street offers free meal

Sophomore Alex Hergott’s Thanksgiving will be a little different this year. Instead of spending about $1,400 on roundtrip airfare, the Arizona native will be spend Thanksgiving break at GW.

But instead of eating at a restaurant, Hergott and 200 other students will spend their holiday eating a customary Thanksgiving dinner in the Marvin Center.

My friends will all be home and it is a nice idea for those students who will be alone in their apartments or dorms on Thanksgiving day to come together as a community, he said. Having free Thanksgiving fosters a community of students here at GW.

The free Thanksgiving day meal is sponsored by the Marvin Center Scheduling and Operations Office, the Community Living and Learning Center, International Student Organization, Marvin Center Governing Boards and the Residence Hall Association.

This year marks the first time the University sponsored the event for students who live too far away to go home for the holiday. In previous years the Marvin Center and J Street were closed Wednesday through Sunday during Thanksgiving.

It’ll provide students with another option rather than spending money at a restaurant, said Danielle Lico, senior associate event planner for the Marvin Center.

International students, students from the West Coast and students who have to work during the holiday break will probably attend the meal and watch football on the large screen televisions in J Street, Lico said.

Mike Gargano, vice president of Student and Academic Affairs, said he proposed the idea because he thought something needed to be done for the students who were staying on campus during the break.

There are also a lot of staff who work over the holiday time and if we can mobilize the forces it would be a nice thing to do, Gargano said.

The dinner will also serve as an educational event for international students who aren’t familiar with the U.S. holiday.

It is an opportunity to educate students on an important aspect of the American culture, Gargano said.

Lico says the dinner takes pressure off of people to find something to do for Thanksgiving dinner.

We want the GW community to enjoy some of the typical holiday traditions, she said.

The dinner begins at 1 p.m. on Thanksgiving day and will run until 4 p.m.

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