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by Elizabeth Johnson, student writer


The second annual International Holiday Bazaar held Dec. 1 on Fort Street Mall had it all: games, contests, performances, Christmas carols and paraphernalia, and lots of aloha for everyone who participated.

The bazaar is a chance for the many different cultural clubs at HPU to exhibit their heritage in terms of a specific holiday that means something to their culture.

The booths were judged on whether they were festive, creative, and interactive. With countries ranging from China to Samoa, there was something for everyone.

It was interesting to learn how holidays were celebrated in different cultures. Jennifer Manini, the Samoan Club treasurer, said: “Christmas is about Christ, not Santa. We celebrate as a congregation, and then we celebrate with our families.”

Visitors to the bazaar also learned that in Switzerland there is no such person as Santa Claus. “His name is Chris Kind, and he is an angel who brings gifts on the 24th of December,” said Marie Nachtmann, as she and Lisa Schwedes built a traditional gingerbread house.

In Canada, Christmas seems to be overshadowed by Boxing Day, which is Dec. 26. “Everything is on sale, and you box and return things from Christmas,” explained Shauna Terry, as she supervised the club’s celebration of Canada’s national winter sport, hockey.

When it comes to New Year celebrations, Brazil knows how to do it, too. Brazilians pray to the goddess of the Ocean, Lemanja, and offer her such things as candles and corn as they ask for blessings on the New Year. Ana Lautrert explained that women Brazilians also buy different colored underwear to represent what they want in the year to come: Pink for happiness in love, yellow for money, white for peace, blue for contentment and health, green for natural energy, and violet for inspiration and imagination.

Carl Banghart, in the U.S.A. booth, had the most interesting response when asked what the holidays meant to him. He said: “It’s about uniting as one, as a family. For some of us, the people we meet here are our family during these times. The holidays show us how we can all relate and bond no matter what walk of life we came from.”

All the booths were special in their own way, but first place went to the Samoan booth. Second place went to the Danish Dynamites, whose booth included a game of throwing pennies into small glasses, a traditional holiday game in Denmark. Third place went to The Students for Essential Equality, whose booth represented all countries, nations, and people.


Santa Sharky with two HPU cheerleaders .

The French Club sings Christmas carols.

Kalamalama, the HPU Student Newspaper. All rights reserved.

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