Purdue Memorial Union to celebrate Holidays Around the World

November 25, 2013  

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – The holiday season at Purdue University will kick off at noon Dec. 2 when the 30-foot-tall Christmas tree arrives at the Memorial Union's Great Hall.

Mildred Osburn, 1516 Fairfax St., Lafayette, is donating this year's tree, a blue spruce. It is one of the biggest indoor Christmas trees in Indiana.

The Purdue Student Union Board will decorate the tree on the evening of Dec. 2. Several other student organizations will decorate ornaments that will be placed on the tree. The tree lighting will be at 11:30 a.m. Dec. 3 and will feature Purdue President Mitch Daniels.

The 16th annual Holidays Around the World, arranged by the Student Union Board, will be from 3-6 p.m. Dec. 4 in the Union's North Ballroom. Several student organizations will feature performances and displays of their cultures and different holidays. Food items will be available to sample.

"In a university of the size and with the diversity of Purdue, it is good for students and student organizations to understand, appreciate and support other cultures that make up its population," said Whitney Ramer, graduate adviser for the board. "While Christmas is represented with the tree, the Purdue Student Union Board also represents Kwanzaa, Hannukah, Chinese New Year and many other cultural celebrations throughout the year in our Holidays Around the World celebration."

Groups scheduled to participate include Black Cultural Center, Department of German and Russian, Friends of Brazil, Hillel, Hong Kong Student Association, Italian Club, Latino Student Union, LCC Embajadores, Purdue Filipino Association, Purdue Pagan Academic Network and Ukrainian Student Society.

In addition, students and Purdue Memorial Union dining services on Friday (Nov. 22) began building a 12-foot-tall gingerbread house in the Great Hall.

As part of the celebration, local musicians and schools will perform holiday songs in the Great Hall from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 3 and 4. For a list of performances, visit http://www.union.purdue.edu/studentevents/events/Index.html 

A Guess the Lights Contest also will take place Dec. 3-15. The top three people who come closest to guessing the correct number of lights on the Christmas tree will receive prizes from local businesses. Guesses can be submitted in the Great Hall.

Breakfast with Santa will feature a free visit with Santa, holiday crafts and live music. The event will be from 8-10:30 a.m. Dec. 7 in the Great Hall. The breakfast in the North Ballroom is $3.50 for pancakes, two sausage links and juice or milk. Coffee and hot chocolate will be available for an additional $1.50. Story time with Mrs. Claus will be at the same time in Room 118. 

Writer: Greg McClure, 765-496-9711, gmcclure@purdue.edu 

Source: Whitney Ramer, 765-494-8981, psubgs2@purdue.edu

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