The attendees enjoyed appetizers prepared by the members of 2 Dickinson St. (2D), the International Food Co-op and the Brown Co-op, as well as contributions from all three co-ops at Campus.
At each of the co-ops, “chefs showcased refreshments and hors d’oeuvres,” said International Food Co-op member and co-founder Mike Wang ’10, who was one of the event's organizers. The spread for the buffet-style dinner at Campus contained a variety of dishes, including chicken quesadillas by the Brown Co-op, peanut-butter curry chickpeas by 2D and Greek-themed dishes by the International Food Co-op.
The aim was to “build tradition and build a sense of community between the co-ops, and to make co-ops a visible, attractive social and eating option on campus,” Wang explained.
The idea for the semiformal had “been in the works really seriously for three weeks by two representatives from each of the co-ops, but very much in the spirit of co-ops, everyone helped, all sharing chores,” said Brown Co-op member Jessica Lander ’10, another organizer of the event. “I think this is the best food on campus.”
Co-op members and non-members alike praised the event. “It’s an awesome event. I’m really pleased with how it turned out, because there were times when things were pretty hectic getting organized,” 2D member Jon Bradshaw ’10 said.
International Food Co-op member Megan Wong ’11 said "there [was] some miscommunication between the co-ops before [the event]” about food preparation, but that everything worked out well. Wong added that the “Co-op Hop” served as a “version of Winter Formal[s].”
Alissa Escarce ’10, a 2D member, said the semiformal was a positive experience and demonstrated that the co-ops were “not just sources of food.” The event, she added, was “a good opportunity to do what we do out in a party setting.”
Tower Club member Brooke Peterson ’11 also commended the event, saying that it was successful in “breaking the tradition that only eating clubs have parties on the Street.”
Some students found the event reinforced their interest in joining a co-op. Julie Ahn ’12, a prospective co-op member, said it “was really good to see all the co-ops and all their different styles … I’m leaning towards joining.” Another prospective co-op member, Megan Orlando ’12, echoed that sentiment, saying that the formal was “super fun … There’s a lot of delicious food.”
Eric Schlossberg ’10, a former Colonial Club member who is independent this year, added that the event showcased the co-ops’ “great community.”
“I didn’t realize there was as much of a culture as it appears … Everyone seems to be friends here,” he said.
Though most co-op members expressed enthusiasm about the event, Escarce said that initially “some people were a little against having the formal” because it resembled the eating clubs too much.
Despite the initial reluctance of some, the event drew widespread acclaim. “I’m just happy to see so many people here,” Wang said. “The entire co-op community showed up.”
Wang and Lander noted that the semiformal will become an annual event, and that co-op members are considering holding a similar joint event in the spring.