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Northern Star

The Student News Site of Northern Illinois University

Northern Star

A taste of Mardi Gras at Holmes

Victoria Wakeford
Multiple different foods sit on a counter with a Mardi Gras table cloth. NIU Dining Services put on a Mardi Gras Fat Tuesday lunch. (Victoria Wakeford | Northern Star)

DeKALB – The Grill brought a Mardi Gras celebration to NIU with food, crafts and a photo booth available for students on Fat Tuesday.

From 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Tuesday at The Huskie Den, The Grill had a special menu including a Cajun chicken rice wrap, red beans and rice, hush puppies, andouille sausage sandwiches with sauteed onions and cupcakes. 

For $8.99 students could go through the line of food and get what they wanted. This was available through Huskie Bucks and Dining Dollars.

“It’s way better than the dining food usually is,” said Alexandrea Medina, psychology first-year. 

There was a crown-making station for students to decorate their own crowns with different colored jewels and a photo backdrop with different props for people to pose with. 

“We’re gonna go make crowns after and for sure take a picture,” Medina said.

A table sits with a Mardi Gras tablecloth and props for a photoshoot. During the Fat Tuesday event, students were able to take pictures with props in front of a backdrop. (Victoria Wakeford | Northern Star)

The Huskie Den was decorated from top to bottom. There were purple, green and yellow tablecloths, crowns hanging from the ceiling and different colored cups for the hurricane punch, a fruity drink.

Kevin Shirley, retail dining manager for The Grill at the Huskie Den, said dining services wanted to educate students on Lent because a lot of them do not understand the religious event. 

“We explained to them that certain religions practice fasting after lunch during Lent,” Shirley said. “Fat Tuesday is the time to basically go a little overboard prior to that fasting.”

Lent takes place from Feb. 14 to March 28. 

Elitzia Ocasio, sophomore psychology major, said she did not realize the event was happening and it was a great surprise.

“It was definitely the best dining dollars I’ve spent,” Ocasio said.

Lorry Ekstrom, retail dining assistant manager for The Grill at the Huskie Den, said dining services are planning more events at the Huskie Den that will be announced soon.

“We’re just trying to do a few more things to get more people involved and wanting to come into the Den and hang out,” Ekstrom said.

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