Election Day Prep & Pumpkin Carving: A Haverford House Update from Claire Michel '18
October has already been such a busy month for all of us in Haverford House and we haven’t even begun to set up for Halloween! We started off the month with the most delicious meal from Eat Café, a project by Drexel’s Center for Hunger-Free Communities where Sabea works. Eat Café is a nonprofit restaurant that operates on a pay-what-you-can model and uses fresh, seasonal, and local ingredients. Chef Steve brought us out everything to taste including a special cheese and bread appetizer that was amazing. We are very grateful for Chef Steve, our waitress Halley, and Chef Valerie for graciously hosting us.
The next Friday we hosted another delicious meal with City Love (the Friends in Residence at Haverford next semester) and a few of our friends. We loved getting to know City Love and hearing about their work (and eating Caselli’s carrot-green pesto)! For the communal dinner, TJ and Callie also made amazing shepherd’s pie, which is super impressive considering we didn’t have water all day and had to borrow some from our neighbors! Sabea plans to bring City Love to the house next semester for more events so stay tuned.
That weekend we also hosted another successful plant walk and workshop all thanks to Smmo’s planning. The theme of the walk was edible and medicinal plants so we started off the event with a plant walk in West Philly with Pennsylvania Horticultural Society's Sally McCabe, and then had a seitan workshop with Akebu-lan Marcus from Mill Creek Urban Farm. We wrapped up with a medicinal plant talk with Haverford alum Jahzara Heredia '16. We really appreciate learning from all of our amazing peers!
This past Wednesday we hosted, along with the alumni office, a pumpkin carving happy hour. Thank you so much to Amanda Acosta '18 from the alumni office for providing cider, pumpkins, and Dottie’s Doughnuts. While I, of course, think my pumpkin was the star of the show, TJ made the best Haverford squirrel pumpkin of the night. Once all of our pumpkins were finished we brought them on the porch, lit all of the candles, and got to appreciate them in all their glory.
On Tuesday we had a small surprise party for Jason’s birthday with champagne, doughnuts, and a sweet poem by Smmo and TJ, and on Friday we had a larger party for both Jason and Callie’s birthdays. We almost all have guests this week so the party was a lot of fun. We also had a delicious cake that Callie made for her own party.
While Halloween has not happened yet we're already getting ready to celebrate! We have decided to do a group costume (which will be a surprise so check out our Instagram later to see what we do!!) so we have been watching the TV show we were inspired by as a house to do research. We have been protecting our pumpkins from the squirrels by keeping them inside, but we also have those ready to go. All we need to do is buy some candy for the trick-or-treaters!
This month has also been very busy for us individually. October is an especially busy month for me at Committee of Seventy, since election day is November 6th. In preparation, Seventy has been making sure our voter guide is up to date and we relseased an app, WeVote, for the Greater Philadelphia area to make sure that voting is as easy as possible. I highly encourage downloading WeVote because it puts all the information you could ever need right at your fingertips, like how to apply for an absentee ballot and what your rights are as a voter. This month I was able to attend an event Seventy hosted called Why Harrisburg Matters, where I got to hear from State Reps Chris Rabb and Donna Bullock. I also was able to attend Philadelphia’s Behavioral Science Initiative Conference where I got to hear how the city has used behavioral science to encourage behaviors like recycling! This was very exciting for me as a psychology major and economics minor.
Smmo and I also planned out events for next month that Haverford House will be hosting so stay tuned for those, including another plant workshop!
Jason has been preparing for more events with Juntos and Shut Down Berks this month.
TJ had a very successful Friday taking students to Justice and Work to see the good work that they do. At his Education Law Center placement, the report he has been working on since joining finally got published, which TJ is very excited about. His next Philly Friday event is on November 9th at YouthBuild Philly.
Callie’s afterschool program at Puntes has also started this month!
October has obviously been very exciting and busy for us all. We have been able to do so much and are very grateful for everyone who joined us and hung out with us so far! - Claire Michel '18, Fellow at Committee of Seventy