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Holiday luncheon a chillingly good time for faculty and staff

Professor emeritus Dick Moriarty says he enjoyed the stand-up format of the Big Chill holiday luncheon, Thursday in Vanier Hall.

“You got a chance to get around and talk to everyone,” he says. “I have seen colleagues who are retired, those who are still working, and some who don’t me as a professor—just as Sean’s dad.”

Dr. Moriarty—father of Sean Moriarty in Information Technology Services—also won a door prize draw for a night’s stay at the Hilton Hotel. He says his wife will help him to figure out how to use it.

The party drew more than 300 guests, says catering manager Dean Kissner.

“It was extremely upbeat and festive,” he says. “Everyone was here just to have a good time.”

This is the second year the event has followed a stand-up format, with patrons moving between food stations that served dishes ranging from tortillas with Mexican fillings to fruit in a chocolate fountain.

“I think people are getting more comfortable with the format,” Kissner says.

Moriarty certainly is, saying he chose his meal based on “whatever had the shortest line,” and eventually got to sample some of everything.

Cathie Janisse, coordinator of the campus service office, is quick to identify her favourite part: a special bar that served garlic potatoes in martini glasses with a choice of toppings ranging from broccoli in cheese sauce to chili, fried onions or horseradish.

“Who can beat mashed potatoes?” she asks. “I covered mine in poutine gravy and whatever else they had!”

James McGinlay at the bar

Kevin Storey and Ian Hibbert work behind the bar—itself an ice sculpture—at Thursday’s luncheon.

table full of long submarine-style sandiwiches

Guests enjoyed a selection of comically long sandwiches.

Renee Wintermute

Renée Wintermute of the University Secretariat adds bacon atop her mashed potato martini.

Brittany Renaud

Brittany Renaud, a cook with Food Services, impresses herself with her skills at making hot chocolate.