Story and Photos by McKenna Kloes
Some tables have rings and scratches made from board games and family ruckus. Others are the surface for wine glasses being swirled and fiddled with as first date nerves signal the beginning of a love story. Others yet provide the space for inspired policy debates and entrepreneurial light bulbs.
Much transpires around the safety of a familiar table, but one truth remains constant: Human beings are wired in a way that gravitates towards connectedness. For decades in America, the table has symbolized this place of community. For many, the lessons and values held nearest and dearest to their hearts were learned in the context of making and sharing meals around the dining room table.
As millennials reach the season of life where they must choose their own tables (and the people that will surround them), many have taken to pondering their own experiences with the making and sharing of meals with loved ones. Newfound independence begs the question – will they carry on the tradition?
For WWU Sophomore Morgan Donohue, the answer is a resounding “yes.” Donohue opens her home to other college-aged women every Wednesday to gather for good food and even better conversation. The meal making responsibilities are shared among each member of the group and Donohue said it has been growing in size and popularity each week.
“I just want to provide an open door place for girls to be able to make friends and share a meal together every week. I wanted them to get to know each other,” Donohue said.
Weekly attendance includes about 15 women, but their growing community embraces invitation and acceptance. Laughter, food fights and tight hugs bring warmth to Donohue’s home as music plays and oven timers beep. One shared sentiment echoes among the entire group; gathering for meals has taught them to love that each person brings their own experiences and points of view to the table.