With black and white chocolate fountains and romantic decorations, the BYU–Hawaii Cafeteria celebrated Valentine’s Day on Feb. 14 with a special lunch and treats. Students who tasted the chocolate desserts said they loved the taste of the chocolate sauce from the fountains.
The biggest attraction was the dark and white chocolate fountains placed in front of the dessert section, according to students. Fruits and marshmallows were served to accompany the chocolate. At 11 a.m., when lunch began, a great amount of students made a long line behind the fountains, which extended to the middle of the Cafeteria.
With smiles on their faces, students put marshmallows, pineapples, and strawberries under the chocolate fountains. Strawberries, which are normally not served in the cafeteria, were said to be a favorite among several students.
Satisfied with the taste of fruit and chocolate, Shan Arumugam, a sophomore from India studying business management, said the special lunch made him happy because of the different-lighthearted theme. “The chocolate with the fruits, it’s really yummy. I come to the cafeteria everyday but today is different.”
Heeji Mun, a social and marketing specialist for BYUH Food Services, was in charge of promoting the event. Mun said she was glad to see students wear smiles when they were around the chocolate fountains, instead of being anxious about their studies.
“When I walk around the campus, most students just worry about their tests. Their faces [tell me], ‘I have a lot of assignments and tests.’ But I can see a lot of people smiling in front of the chocolate fountains,” shared Mun, a sophomore majoring in graphic design from Korea.
Sierra Taukinukufili, a sophomore from Utah majoring in Hawaiian studies, said she only has a block plan and her schedule that day was tight, but she still made time to come to the cafeteria to enjoy the chocolate fountains.
“You don’t get it a lot it, I just really wanted to come and grab it. It tastes really good, just like Nutella,” she shared.
Kayli Whiting, a freshman from Utah with undecided major, said the chocolate fountain related to Valentine’s Day well. “I like celebrating things and I like chocolate. It’s nice for my friends and I to come and have chocolate. Valentine’s Day is a good excuse for me to eat it.”
Beside from the chocolate fountains, cupcakes with pink frosting and red toppings were also served at the dessert section. The whole food serving area was decorated with red, pink, and white balloons with love messages, such as “I love you,” and “Hugs and kisses.”
Arumugam shared his thoughts on the decorations, “It makes me sad. It’s fun to have a girlfriend, ask her out, and celebrate something, but it’s not just celebrating one day. Everyday should be a Valentine’s Day.”
Taffie Kwok, a student cook for Food Services who helped prepared the event, said seeing the crowd of students made her feel as if the event turned out a success. “There are a lot of people during lunch time everyday for sure, but it’s especially more crowded today. The line [behind the chocolate fountains] is extremely long.
“Students do have interest in this. Many of them came in pairs and spent quality time together. I’m just happy to see that,” shared Kwok, a freshman from Hong Kong studying communications.
There have been different explanations about the origin of Valentine’s Day. According to history.com, one common version was that during the 3rd century in Rome, Emperor Claudius II decided that single men would be better warriors and therefore made marriage for young men illegal.
Opposing the unfairness created by the King’s decision, Saint Valentine kept performing wedding ceremonies secretly for young couples. After Saint Valentine’s action was discovered, he ended up being executed. Valentine’s Day was created in memory of Saint Valentine’s death, according to history.com.