As the holiday season approaches, college students are immediately given an excuse to throw a “themed” party filled with food, friends and festive cocktails. Whether it be a tacky sweater party or a traditional dirty santa gift exchange, everyone has their own unique way of celebrating, and that’s what makes these get togethers so anticipated and enjoyable.
Here on SMU’s campus we have some holiday traditions of our own. The infamous Celebration of Lights put on by Student Foundation, is the highlight of the holiday season for many students on campus. It brings a lot of publicity to campus as well as beautiful scenery for those in attendance as Dallas Hall and the trees of the boulevard are set to life with beautiful lights. This year the celebration is on Dec. 3 and begins at 6:30 p.m.
Right in the SMU Highland Park neighborhood there are fun ways to get in the holiday mood. Many have seen the romantic carriages trotting through the beautifully lit Highland Park Village during the month of December. You may think that you need a hot date to find your way into this fairytale, but that is very untrue. Three Jays is the company that does the rides and, and they have carriages that seat up to 12 passengers, all accompanied with lights, garland, and music. The duration of the ride is one hour, and prices vary from $150- $260 depending on how big the carriage. So if you’re in the mood to get cozy with a special someone or just your girls, this may be for you.
Since so many students finish exams early in the week, their celebration traditions are back at home. It’s also difficult with the stress and business of exam time to get in the holiday spirit.
“I love the holidays, but unfortunately I don’t get that much time to enjoy them after Thanksgiving because I am so worried about exams and everything I need to finish before the end of the semester. My traditions are once I get home, my family celebrates both Hannakuh and Christmas so we have a big Hannakah party with everyone and then for Christmas we go up to the lake where everything is decorated. As for with my friends, we plan to have a dirty santa game before we all go our separate ways for the break,” junior Allie Shea said.
A lot of traditions are rather informal and may just include a holiday movie marathon with friends accompanied by a warm cup of hot cocoa and some baked treats.
“My family has a cookie party once I get back home. Every member brings a different type of cookie and I have a huge family so it makes for quite a variety. We’ve been doing it for years and each year everyone seems to get a little more into it, it’s really fun,” junior Niki Powell said.
“My mom and I always go to the same place to get our Christmas tree. We’ve been going there since I can remember and she always waits until I get home to go get it,” senior Sarah Escherich said.
This year senior Mary Holbrook took it upon herself to start a new holiday tradition amongst her friends. She planned a tacky Christmas sweater party for a fun pre game before heading to Homebar this past Thursday.
“We encouraged everyone to dress in their craziest Christmas attire to celebrate our favorite holiday. It was a hit and everyone had awesome costumes! It was fun to decorate for and we set up lights and a tree. Some people brought Christmas cookies and other treats. I think everyone would agree a tacky holiday party should be a tradition!” Holbrook said.