Target Systems Department 2022 holiday multicultural potluck

Holidays provide a wonderful opportunity to connect with family and friends, to be grateful and celebrate recent achievements and to look forward to new endeavors. On Dec. 1, the Fermilab accelerator directorate’s Target Systems Department hosted a 2022 holiday multicultural potluck in the Booster Tower West Penthouse/Grotto. The participants were invited to share their cultural holiday traditions and bring their signature dishes to represent the cultural diversity of the TSD community.

The day before the event, a group of volunteers led by our wonderful TSD admin Kim Henley had fun decorating the BTW’s Penthouse and Grotto rooms. The area acquired a warm ambiance ready for a festive family gathering. Thirteen posters depicting holiday traditions of the TSD’s culturally diverse community were arranged on the walls, colorful holiday lights, shiny foil spirals and the imaginary yet almost palpable warmth of the digital fireplace set the holiday mood.

On the day of the celebration, people gathered around the tables to sample a variety of gourmet foods and delicious desserts. It was very nice to catch up with old friends and to meet new colleagues. The conversation was flowing, and people shared their appreciation for the diverse foods offered by their friends and colleagues. Everyone tried to sample as many interesting foods and desserts as possible. Henry Schram (TSD Engineering Integration) pointed out, “As cliché as it sounds, every dish I sampled was delicious! Much thanks to all the chefs who contributed. I can’t risk mentioning any specific offering, for fear of leaving someone out. It was also a treat sampling dishes from different cultures.” And Yun He, the TSD working committee chair and the TSD operations group leader, put it so eloquently, “It was heartwarming to see everyone enjoying each other’s company. Thank you for sharing the foods and your culture, your presence, your smiles, the conversations, the enthusiasm that our TSD members showed in the event preparation and participation brings us a strong sense of community. I am grateful to be a part of this community.”

A new member of the TSD family, Adrian Orea (TSD Operations), expressed his opinion, “I just wanted to show my appreciation for making us new folk feel welcome and part of the team! I’ve only been at the lab for about two months, but it feels like I’ve been here much longer!” Meanwhile, our department deputy head Kris Anderson, who has been at the lab for 33 years, said, “This was perhaps the best holiday party. It had the feel of a family holiday gathering. The food and treats were absolutely delicious. Looking around all I could see were friends and colleagues smiling and enjoying each other’s company. I think we were all sad to see the party come to a close.“ Kris added, “Personally, it has been a privilege working with everyone in TSD this year!”

Summarizing the team’s accomplishments over the past year and commenting on the gathering, the TSD head, Bob Zwaska, could not have said it better. “Thank you for all your efforts over this last year, and for sharing your culture and food with us today. ​I am very proud of what we have achieved and know that you all have contributed to our success, even our newest employees (of whom there are many).”

The party lasted only an hour and a half, but the memories of it will stay with us much longer. It is important to mention all the wonderful people who lent their hands and talents to make this event a success! Kim and Yun undertook the enormous effort of the event organization. The whole TSD working committee (which consists of one member from each TSD group) was instrumental in bringing their own holiday decorations and helping with the decoration process, setting up and dismantling the party layout and making sure that the event would run smoothly and seemingly effortlessly. It was nice to see members from various groups, seasoned or new to the TSD community, working together harmoniously.

Yun, along with Kevin Lynch (TSD Science), captured precious moments with their cameras; Sudeshna Ganguly (TSD Science) skillfully gathered the photos into elegantly themed collages. Frederique Pellemoine, the TSD R&D group leader, offered festive note cards with her own designs; the event participants used them to write their best holiday wishes (some of them in different languages) and posted these cards on the boards around the multicultural posters. Neal Bogart and George Maniatis (TSD Technical) made plates for the warming stove while Alajos Makovec (TSD MARS Group), Adrian Orea, and Jonathan Williams (TSD Projects) set up the digital fireplace. Also joining us for this event were accelerator directorate senior managers Sasha Valishev, Mary Convery, Ann Nestander; directorate admin Hannah Fee; and PIP-II project scientist Eduard Pozdeyev. Many people contributed to the success of the party, and many people enjoyed the outcome tremendously. We would like to express our sincere gratitude to all these talented, hardworking colleagues who made this gathering memorable! Finally, Dali Georgobiani (TSD MARS Group) took the assignment of telling TSD stories to capture the warm memories of our community.

Please see the 2022 TSD Holiday Multicultural Potluck SharePoint Page for more photos (login with services account required).

The TSD team wishes you and your loved ones a wonderful holiday season! We are looking forward to a happy new year with new challenges and accomplishments!