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Small business owners from several countries experience first Thanksgiving meal in Louisville

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE)- One Louisville woman decided to share a bit of the Thanksgiving tradition with a group of small business owners from different countries.

They were in town for a development program. At Diane Kelton's east Louisville home, the table was festively set and the full menu of Thanksgiving dinner was almost ready late Thursday morning.

"...Brussel sprouts and a little different this year that I usually don't do is, we're going to start out with a butternut squash cashew soup with puff pastry," said Kelton as she stirred a pan of sizzling food.

This holiday, Kelton hosted a handful of international guests at her home for Thanksgiving dinner. Small business owners from Saudi Arabia, Algeria, Qatar and Oman. They were all in the United States on a business exchange via the World Affairs Council of Kentucky and Southern Indiana. Kelton said she hoped they would experience.

"...Mainly what Thanksgiving is about. I think, is about being with family and friends and loved ones," said Kelton. "Its just giving thanks of how fortunate we are to have people that care about us."

The guests finally arrived around noon. Soon after, it was time to eat.

"It's my first and it's awesome, actually," said Sara Badawi, of Saudi Arabia. "(The) same feeling, yeah. The same feeling like in Saudi Arabia. We do it, but for another holiday, in Saudi Arabia, it's like Eid ul-Adha and Eid ul-Fitr and in Ramadan, also."

Amine Beraff was another member of the group. He was from Algeria.

"This is my first time to attend Thanksgiving," Beraff said, speaking through an interpreter. "And I'm really very happy and honored to be here with the family."

What was the best part of the meal about halfway through?

"The food!" Badawi said, which made almost everyone at the table erupt in laughter.

And there was something more Kelton's guests would remember from this Thanksgiving.

"The world receiving part," said Beraff through an interpreter.

Badawi said she would remember "the time we spent together."

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