Tommies share unique Thanksgiving traditions

As Thanksgiving draws near, St. Thomas students plan to spend time with friends and family, partake in unique traditions, and think about what they’re thankful for this year.

Unique traditions

While many St. Thomas students plan to eat traditional Thanksgiving dinners with family and friends, other students, such as junior James Blaschko, are looking forward to unique Thanksgiving traditions.

“My family has a rotten-pumpkin-rolling-down-a-hill race,” Blaschko said. “We take all the rotten frozen pumpkins left over from Halloween and we go to the top of a hill in my aunt’s backyard and when my grandpa gives the signal, all of us cousins roll our pumpkins down the hill as fast as we can.

“The first one to the bottom wins five dollars. I’ve won for the past two years in a row. I’m pretty proud of that record.”

Junior Kevin Gause said his family has an open-door policy when it comes to Thanksgiving dinner.

“If anyone in the family wants to invite anyone, they can,” he said. “Sometimes the adults invite friends or colleagues that might need a little extra help, friendship, company. So it can get pretty interesting, meeting new people at a family function.”

Other students, such as junior Dana Terrones, prepare Thanksgiving dinner in different ways.

“We always cook the turkey gizzards and neck while we are waiting for everything else to cook,” she said. “There isn’t much, but mostly everyone in my family likes them. We have to cut them all up and attempt to divide it equally.”

Junior Katie Souba looks forward to family activities such as watching football and attending a Minnesota Wild hockey game the day before or after Thanksgiving day.

Other St. Thomas students, such as junior Ali Coffman, are looking forward to extensive preparation for a traditional Thanksgiving dinner.

“My grandma spends the whole week cooking, so I basically don’t eat the day before Thanksgiving so I can stuff myself,” Coffman said.

Student express their thanks

While looking forward to participating in Thanksgiving traditions, St. Thomas students are also considering what they are thankful for this year.

Souba is grateful for her family’s health and support.

“I have seen so many families face tragedies in the past few years and I am so thankful that my family has been blessed with good health, safety and security,” she said.

She said she’s also thankful that her parents have jobs.

“In this awful economy, so many families have been thrown into financial turmoil and I’m so thankful for my parents’ jobs and their financial security that has led to me having a comfortable life,” she said.

Gause is also thankful for friends and family who support and guide him.

“My family is always there to help me in many ways: school finances, advice, stress reduction, etc. I am also thankful for my friends that are always by my side,” he said. “I am thankful for the life I have been given. Things could be a lot worse, so I try not to take advantage of the situation I am in.”

Many St. Thomas students, including senior John Kieffer, are thankful for their opportunities and blessings.

“I’m thankful for the things that I have taken for granted over the years, such as my health and my family, and the opportunity to attend a university,” Kieffer said. “I’m also thankful for the goodness in the ideas and people who make America the great place to live that it is.”

Rebecca Omastiak can be reached at