The Association for African Americans Collegians (AAAC) and the Latin American Student Organization (LASO) held its second event of the year, the Soul Food Afro Caribbean dinner.
The event was held on Nov. 13 in the Sunnen Lounge at 4 p.m.
“For the soul food dinner we wanted to try something new,” said Tyrell Thompson, AAAC Advertising Coordinator. “This is my first event I am hosting as Advertising coordinater and the way I wanted to do the dinner was that I wanted to make it more festal, but put a little more culture into it. Because last year’s soul food dinner was bland and had no theme to it so AAAC decided to combine forces with LASO and we came up with the idea.”
The event began with a welcoming from Thompson, AAAC President Victoria Townson and AAAC Vice President Gabriall Moore.
People enjoyed the traditional soul food with Afro-Caribbean food such as jerk chicken, Calypso Salad, Jamaican punch and rice and peas, catered by Jamaican Cuisine.
Also students brought in dishes from home. Kayla Thompson, a junior anthropology major brought her homemade macaroni and cheese. Naomi Russell, freshmen biology major, brought in collard greens.
“You can’t have a soul food dinner without greens,” Russell said.
Jamaican music played such as Sean Paul featuring Keyshia Cole’s “Give It Up to Me” and “You, My African Queen” by “2Face” Ibidia.
West African Dance group, Kreative Pandemonium, also performed.
The group performs throughout the St. Louis area and recently traveled to Mexico and Canada to share the tradition of West Africa through dance and music.
The Kreative Pandemonium group includes Weedie Braimah (drums), Alex Owen (drums), Yahalalel (drums), Ezra Kanyiyah (drums), Hadarah Street (dancer), Imani Amos (dancer) and Andrea Peoples (dancer). Peoples is a junior anthropology major with a minor in dance.
“Kayla Thompson and I have a class together and she knew about the group and asked us to perform and we were like sure,” Peoples said.
They began performing three songs in a piece call Orisha, a Nigerian religion that is only worshipped in West Africa and Latin America. One of the songs was called “Jun” which is only used in special gatherings.
Then, they performed with audience participation a dance called Kassa. Kassa is a West African dance that Kreative Pandemonium pretended to cut grain and corn in a harvest.
Steward Styles III, junior music education major, stole the show because he gave energy to the performance.
“It was fun once you put your body into it,” Styles said.
The event closed with Kreative Pandemonium performing a dance called Dounbounba, a dance for the strong men, which received a standing ovation.
Victoria Thompson, Kayla Thompson’s mother was proud her son put on a successful, but organized event.
Thompson was pleased that his first event turned out good that more than 90 people showed up.