Another AmCham-pagne occasion as Americans gather to give thanks

Now in its eleventh year, the Annual Family Thanksgiving Dinner at the Marriott is quickly becoming a city institution

The beautiful Vesterhavet Ballroom at the Copenhagen Marriott was the backdrop for AmCham’s 11th Annual Family Thanksgiving Dinner on Sunday November 25. A sell-out crowd of 360 participants this year contributed to a great festive atmosphere.

This year’s main sponsor, Microsoft, once again provided some fantastic children’s entertainment in the shape of two Xbox 360 Kinect stations, which saw the kids (and a few parents!) take part in some seriously competitive sports and dance games.

The presentation of the turkey saw Ambassador Fulton joined by sponsors from Microsoft and chefs from the Marriott  (Photo: Pamela Juhl)The US ambassador, Laurie S Fulton, took to the podium to express her thanks that we live in a democracy where we have political, religious and personal freedoms − something we cannot take for granted. She also engaged participants in a Thanksgiving quiz, prompting the audience to shout out their answers. Following the ambassador, Reverend Ronald Rentner of the International Church of Copenhagen and Kevin Locke, a Native American performer, both gave spiritual blessings, reminding us of all the things we have to be thankful for during the holiday. American-Danish singer Tamra Rosanes and her son Noah then entertained the guests with a set of down-home country tunes.

Marriott chef Irene Mai indulged guests with an authentic and extremely tasty Thanksgiving meal, including all of the traditional favourites: turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce and green bean casserole, as well as an impressive dessert buffet including pumpkin pie, apple crisp and cheesecake. This year was touted as one of the best on record.

The volunteers from DIS excelled once again (Photo: Pamela Juhl)This year’s table quiz was all about US presidents, past and present. Tables worked together in teams to answer all the questions, which led to a drawing for chocolate advent calendars courtesy of Mars. In the meantime, the kids kept busy with activities that were supervised by volunteers from the Danish Institute for Study Abroad (DIS). Ronald McDonald was at the party, courtesy of McDonald’s, and kept kids entertained with magic tricks and balloon creations. Many kids also enjoyed the supervised arts and crafts room as well as a movie room for those who needed a little quiet time.

AmCham executive director Stephen Brugger announces the winner of the top prize in the raffle: two return trips to the US courtesy of AirFrance/KLM (Photo: Pamela Juhl)The evening concluded with the popular raffle, which included a fantastic line-up of prizes including return tickets for two to the United States (sponsored by Air France/KLM); two sets of professional Motorola walkie-talkies; a Microsoft Xbox Kinect; an Asus tablet from Møbeltransport Danmark (now ‘Aspire Mobility’); an overnight stay including dinner and breakfast at the Marriott; dinner for four at the Marriott; two overnight stays for two at the Radisson Blu Royal in the Kappenburger Suite; and a club card worth 75,000 points from Crowne Plaza.

Other prizes were donated by the Hard Rock Café, Amway, Hess, The Diplomat Restaurant, Coca Cola, Budweiser, and Tom’s Chocolates. Children parted with a special McDonald’s Happy Meal ‘goody box’ filled with special treats – including toothpaste and toothbrushes kindly donated by Colgate-Palmolive – to keep the parents happy!

The proceeds from the raffle went to the AmCham Education and Integration Fund.

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