Creative Confections and other Traditions

The Davison Hall gingerbread town train

Students, faculty, and staff at Saint Anselm College are spreading the Christmas spirit. As tradition holds, Saint Anselm hosted the annual Gingerbread House Competition on Wednesday, November 28th. Four hundred students on 100 teams gathered in Davison Hall to take part in the friendly, yet extremely competitive event.

“This is intense!” said Jenny Ferrar ’16, as students mixed frosting, designed creative gingerbread layouts and ran back and forth to get supplies provided to them by Saint Anselm Dining Services.

After about two hours, students turned in their gingerbread creations, including houses, lighthouses, boats, movie scenes, and replicas of places on campus. A fan favorite was a Grinch scene with Whoville residents holding hands around the Christmas tree and the Grinch himself looking out at them from the window of a building. No detail was spared; there are even icicles hanging off the eaves of the houses.

The creativity of the Saint Anselm College students was evident as all of the 100 gingerbread creations were displayed next to the Christmas tree in Davison Hall. From now until December 6, each Anselmian has the opportunity to vote for the winning gingerbread masterpiece, and the top three teams will receive $400, $200, or $100, respectively.

Christmas at Saint Anselm would not be complete without the Anselmian way of giving back, and on Saturday, December 1, Anselmians did just that. With the help of the Meelia Center for Community Engagement, students, faculty and staff gathered in the Carr center and set up craft tables for the Holiday Fair, giving children and families from the Manchester area the opportunity to participate in activities such as ornament making, bag decorating, and snowflake making, as well as having pictures taken with Santa.

The giving spirit was in the air at the Holiday Fair, as students demonstrated crafts for the children, and the children created masterpieces of their own, leaving with hands full of crafts and faces full of smiles. Christmas has truly brought out the Anselmian spirit of kindness and giving.

Editor's Note: This story was submitted by Meagan Cox '15.

Christmas Events on the Hilltop

Christmas garland in the college pub

Saint Anselm College celebrates the arrival of the Christmas season with a variety of events, ranging from family festivals to the annual DecemberSong concert by the college choir to the Davison Hall Christmas Feast. The Office of Campus Ministry and the Monastic community celebrate Advent with a full schedule of events which can be found on anselm.edu

We have compiled a listing of the various campus events, and list them below. Happy holidays, and merry Christmas!

Christmas "Giving Trees"

Through December 14

Share the joy of the true meaning of Christmas by participating in our Christmas Giving Tree Project for local children in need.

Each year students, staff, and faculty come together to join in this campus-wide project that gives back to our community. These gifts are distributed by Catholic Charities to families in need throughout the Greater Manchester area.

Christmas Trees with gift tags are located in the first floor of Alumni Hall, the entrance to the Abbey Church, and the Office of Campus Ministry (in Cushing).

Please return gifts to Campus Ministry by Friday, December 14 with gift tag attached.

Donors are encouraged to provide gifts other than gift cards.

Gingerbread House Competition

Wednesday, November 28
8:30 p.m.
Davison Hall

Celebrate the arrival of the Christmas season at Saint Anselm with an annual tradition: the gingerbread house competition! Enjoy a night with friends, while competing for the $400 grand prize.

Stop by the Davison Hall administrative office to pick up your ballot – voting is open to the entire Saint Anselm College community through December 6. Winners will be announced Friday, December 7.

Campus Ministry “Fair Trade Fair”

Friday, November 30
10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Cushing Center

Want to get your Christmas shopping done early? Want to buy products that support artisans and farmers from Asia, Africa and South America? Stop by the Fair Trade Fair for a unique assortment of gifts including toys, home décor, pottery, cards and gifts, bags and purses and religious and indigenous art.

Meelia Center Holiday Fair

Saturday, December 1
11 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Carr Center

Join the Saint Anselm College community for the 21st annual children’s holiday fair. Bring the whole family for holiday crafts and gift making, games, decorations, lots of food and a visit from Santa. As always, this event is free to the local community.

DecemberSong

Saturday, December 1
7:30 p.m.
Abbey Church

 DecemberSong is a special service of readings and songs celebrating the Christmas season. The program begins in darkness with a candlelight contemplative song then progresses through the Advent and Christmas seasons.

This year's program, the night before the first Sunday of Advent is a perfect way to prepare for the special seasons of December. Admission to DecemberSong is free, but plan to arrive early for parking and seating.

Saint Anselm Christmas Tree Lighting

Sunday, December 2
8 p.m. (following Mass)
Plaza behind Alumni Hall

Intercultural Holiday Dinner

Wednesday, December 5
5:00 p.m.
North Lounge, Cushing Center

Enjoy a meal with fellow Anselmians while experiencing intercultural holiday traditions (and food) from around the world. Although it is not mandatory, we encourage you to R.S.V.P By Tuesday, November 27 to Linda Rey at ext. 4282 or lrey@anselm.edu

Sponsored by Campus Ministry and the Multicultural Center

Christmas with CAB

Thursday, December 6
12 – 4 p.m.
Cushing Center

Join Campus Activities Board for “Christmas with CAB” as we celebrate ‘A Christmas Story.’ Enjoy a festive afternoon of ornament making, teddy bear making and be sure to make your Christmas stocking to bring back to your dorm. CAB will be handing out their always-popular long sleeve Christmas shirts throughout the afternoon. There will be waffles, candy, cookies and plenty of hot chocolate to enjoy too. Santa will even stop by for pictures!

Sponsored by Campus Activities Board

Christmas Feast

Thursday, December 6
4:30 p.m.
Davison Hall

Celebrate the season (and the end of fall-semester classes) with the Saint Anselm College community. Join us for the annual Christmas Feast. This year’s menu will include roasted tenderloin of beef, seafood newburg, and chicken crème brie, along with delicious sides, trimmings, and a selection of assorted desserts.

As always, this feast is FREE for all student resident and optional meal plan participants! There will be a nominal charge at the register for all others who wish to partake in the festivities.

Solas in Concert

An Irish Christmas

Friday, December 7
7:30 p.m.
Dana Center

'Solas' is the Gaelic word for 'light', and when this extraordinary group burst on the Irish music scene fifteen years ago, the word most often heard was incandescent. Based in Philadelphia, called "one of the most exciting bands anywhere in the world", Solas combines fresh and unexpected arrangements of age-old classics with compelling original work, electrifying covers of tunes you thought you knew played in entirely new ways, and songs of social commentary. What better way to celebrate the season than with this musical feast of guitar, whistle, keyboard, concertina, bodhran, and soaring vocals. Perfect!

Tickets available on the Dana Center website, or by visiting the Box Office.

Students Compete in Annual Gingerbread Decorating Contest

The building materials:  gingerbread cookies, sugar cubes, shredded wheat and green frosting. The project:  a house, an airplane or maybe a pink guitar.

About 400 Saint Anselm students acted as architects and builders of their own sweet edifices last week, as they participated in the annual Gingerbread House decorating contest. The night in Davison Hall was filled with holiday cheer, as students learned it took a delicate hand to frost and glue together pieces of gingerbread.

The occasional "aah!" signaled a collapse, and the start of a new strategy. Contestants could build anything, as long as it was edible. One team gave Noah's Arc a holiday makeover.

The college community is invited to judge the creations, which are on display in Davison, and decide which three teams will win cash prizes of up to $400. Winners will be announced Friday, Dec. 11.

To see more photos check out the college's Flickr site.

Holidays on the Hilltop

Gingerbread Houses

From gingerbread houses, to Christmas lights, the Saint Anselm College campus has been transformed into a winter wonderland. In the campus dining hall, 100 gingerbread houses sit on a table, topped with the Davison Hall Christmas tree. Alumni Hall has been adorned with the seasonal wreath, while candles shine brightly from each window overlooking the campus quad. Spiritual services, holiday dinners, and the spirit of giving round out the busy season of final papers and exams. [Read more...]

"Dec the Uppers"

First Place Apartment

It’s getting to look a lot like the holidays at Father Bernard Courts and the upper apartments, where white lights blaze, wreaths and red bows adorn doors, and blow up snowmen greet passersby. [Read more...]