Here in the Quad Cities, many holiday-themed events and festivals take place. Some St. Ambrose students, who are locals here in the QCA, share some of their favorite holiday traditions.
One of the most popular events here in the QC is the Festival of Trees. SAU freshman, Ethan Windt shares why this is his favorite.
“My favorite QC local tradition is the festival of trees in Davenport, I like going to see all the different trees, and my favorite part is all the elaborate gingerbread houses being made, I remember one year there was a King Kong recreation that was very cool,” Windt said.
SAU senior, Payton Clauson has a favorite QC tradition that he has attended for many years.
“My favorite QC tradition is the Geneseo Christmas walk,” Clauson said. “The town comes together, there are fun shopping opportunities where they have skits in the shop windows, and a fun parade.”
Not all QC festivities are big events, sometimes the best ones are the ones you make up yourself. SAU senior, Karsyn Johnson agrees.
“One of my favorite things to do with my friends in the QC is driving around and look at all the extravagant Christmas lights on the houses,” Johnson said.
Some families have their own special Christmas traditions, whether it be, going to pick out a Christmas tree, holiday baking competitions, or fun ornament games. Even as college students, these SAU students still look forward to these traditions every year.
SAU senior, Joseph Lasher shares what traditions his family takes part in.
“My family’s yearly tradition is a homemade seafood dinner on Christmas Eve,” Lasher said. “I’m not exactly sure how or when this tradition started, but I’m not complaining! On Christmas Eve, we also watch the 1951 adaptation of A Christmas Carol, starring Alastair Sim. I never liked it as a kid, and it always scared me, but now it’s something I look forward to during the holiday season.”
Windt’s family also has a unique tradition that he looks forward to every year.
“A holiday tradition my family does is this activity on Christmas day where we hide a plastic pickle somewhere around the house, and whoever finds it first gets to open the first present,” Windt said. “It’s a weird tradition but it’s what we do.”
Some families start their holiday traditions as soon as the day after Thanksgiving comes to an end. Clauson’s family has a special tradition.
“My family has this tradition called ‘Claus-the-halls’,” Clauson said. “The day after Thanksgiving we go and cut down our family Christmas tree. It’s always a great time being with my parents and my brothers.”
And sometimes the best traditions are as simple as a family game night.
“My family plays a Christmas card game,” Johnson said. “We have played it for many years, and every year the winner of the game gets to take home the trophy.”
Even though all of these students are from the QCA, they all have their own unique and cherished holiday traditions and memories.