By Paige Asberry
Staff Writer

The Christmas season is commonly described as “the most wonderful time of the year”, and can be celebrated in many different ways.

Hutchinson Community College students have different traditions, and different memories associated with the Christmas season.

For Australia freshman Nestus Burger, Christmas at home is a ho-hum holiday. 

“Some people decorate and celebrate, and some people just don’t,” Burger said. “My family sets up a tree, and goes to church on Christmas Eve, but it’s much more low-key than Christmas here in America.”

Instead of winter, Australia celebrates Christmas “smack dab in the middle of the summer, so it’s always really hot.” Burger said. 

Matti Zeh, Germany freshman, gets to celebrate Christmas for two days.

“Christmas Eve is for family,” Zeh said. The day is spent cooking and preparing food, followed by an afternoon church service, and then dinner. 

“We end the day by opening presents. Some people start that way, but we like it better at night.” Zeh said.  

Christmas Day for Zeh is full of extended family, and lots of food. 

“We go to my grandma’s, pretend to help her prepare the meal, and then we eat at Grandma’s with the whole family,” he said. 

Christmas dinner remains about the same from year to year – featuring a soup course, a main course of späetzle, a type of meatloaf with noodles, and ice cream with melted berries.

“It’s not as big as American Thanksgiving, but it’s a good time with lots of family,” Zeh said.

For Chicago freshman Drake Baker, Christmas is all about time with his family. 

“My family has a traditional ‘Eggnog Pong’ tournament,” Baker said. “Everybody participates, and it gets more and more intense every year.” 

His family does the typical opening of stockings and gifts, but they also have an interesting way of disposing of the tree after Christmas.

“We have a bonfire,” Baker said. “Every year, we burn the tree, and make s’mores over the fire.” 

Christmas holds many memories, and contains many special traditions for people all over the world.

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