After weeks of planning and preparation, the whole school united for an amazing celebration of global awareness. Grier’s 3rd Annual International Day featured fourteen different student groups, representing the nationalities among Grier’s student body. Every group was responsible for serving a dish, decorating their tables, wearing costumes, and giving a performance.
The day of the events, the groups met up in classrooms designated as their team headquarters. They divvied up the tasks. Some students collected the food and cooking utensils coordinated by Grier’s Dining Services and headed off to designated kitchens around campus, which included cottage and dormitory kitchens, as well as, the homes of Grier’s on-campus faculty. Assisted by a teacher, the students prepared and cooked enough portions of their dish to feed 200 plus. Once the food was prepared, the students carried it over to the gymnasium.
In the gymnasium, other groups of students worked earnestly throughout the morning on table decorations, costumes, and performance rehearsals. Teams on table decoration had collected materials to illustrate the culture of their group. Artists created banners and posters, decorators draped table cloths and set out special platters and trays for their foods. As lunchtime approached, students arrived from the kitchens bearing food and put the finishing touches on their décor. Students and teachers wore clothing to reflect their country’s heritage or national colors.
Mrs. Borst greeted the Grier community gathered around the stage area of the gymnasium, and then turned the microphone over to senior Ivy Z who thanked the students and teachers for their hard work putting the event together. She invited the students to enjoy sampling the foods from around the world. As students made their way around the gymnasium, they got souvenir passports stamped at each stop if they could list three facts about the country. Those students that made it “around the world” earned extra credit in their history classes.
The food selected and prepared was exceptional! There was a wide variety, featuring meat, vegetables, breads, and desserts. Some of the foods included beef kebab sliders from Pakistan, corn salad of Mexico, Szechuan pork from China, kimchi pancakes from South Korea, blintzes from Russia, mango and jelly from the Taiwan Province, Vietnamese pork spring rolls, Bermudian gingerbread, milkshakes from the USA, meat and potato stew from Ethiopia, puff-puff from Nigeria, and a different type of fried dough from Rwanda, pitas and hummus from Cyprus and vegetarian sushi from Japan!
The performances were an amazing showcase of student talent and creativity. Several groups seized the opportunity to perform a dance in a traditional or contemporary style of their country. Others sang songs, played instruments, or performed skits. A few special guests were in attendance for the event. Mr. Curtis took a break from retirement to visit the school. Two Pakistani alumnae from the early 2000s also returned to visit their former teachers and enjoy the event.
After the performances concluded, Mrs. Borst took the floor again to congratulate everyone on the event. The crowd cheered and then proceeded to clean up the entire gym before dispersing for other activities, studying, relaxing, and enjoying the weekend.
The event was an enormous success, made possible by the cooperation, talent, creativity, and effort of the whole Grier community. Along with Administrative and Food Services support,Mrs. Abby Curtis was the main coordinator of the event. The event fulfills one component of a multipart objective to increase Global Awareness. It was a wonderful and memorable experience!
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RW | Photo credits: RW, CF, RP