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pi day celebrations at ghbc

Staff Stories - March 30, 2023

No Matter How You Slice It, Pi Day Offers Fun for All!

By Kathie Miller

In the math world, the number pi (π) enjoys something akin to celebrity status. Described by NASA as “the Swiss Army knife of numbers,” pi is a mathematical constant; the ratio of the circumference of any circle to the diameter of that circle. No matter what size the circle is, its ratio is always pi.

Fascinating right? But wait, there’s more!

Pi goes on forever. We commonly shorten it to 3.14, though the decimal digits of pi continue on and on and on and on and on, and they present no repeating patterns. As far back as ancient civilizations, mathematicians have tried to expand our understanding of pi. It’s no wonder this mathematical superstar has a huge fan base, and that’s how March 14 (3/14) now serves as its holiday.

A Brief History of Pi Day

You might ask yourself how Pi Day celebrations started in the first place. The holiday dates back to 1988, when the Exploratorium museum in San Francisco hosted an event inspired by Pi that quickly became an annual tradition. When someone realized March 14 is also the birthday of Albert Einstein, it simply added more fun to the equation.

Goodwin Living Celebrates

Pi Day celebrations have always included another fun favorite – pie! And at Goodwin Living, we celebrated Pi(e) Day this year with a pie eating contest and challenging Chief Financial Officer Xan Smith to see how many digits of pi he could recite. We also invited colleagues from around the organization to participate in a pie eating competition. Our competitors included:

  • Goodwin Home Health Administrator Kerri Mai
  • Senior Living Counselor Daniel Bauman
  • Chief Financial Officer Xan Smith
  • GHBC Cultural Arts and Events Manager Elizabeth Whitehouse
  • Director of Human Resources Heba Sikander
  • GHBC Volunteer Coordinator Steffan Barahona
  • GHBC Director of Safety and Security David Savoy

Enjoy some of these fun photos that capture the event.

Goodwin Living team members hold their pies ahead of the pie eating competition on pi day
Professional piemaker and local small business owner, Sol Schott (far left) was on hand to serve as judge for our pie eating contest. Sol’s Acme Pie Co. made the pies, which were selected personally by each of our pie eating contestants (l to r): Kerri Mai, Daniel Bauman, Xan Smith, Elizabeth Whitehouse, Heba Sikander, Steffan Barahona & David Savoy.


Kerri Mai puts a pie into Xan Smith's face
Kerri Mai rewarded Chief Financial Officer Xan Smith for breaking his previous record of reciting 42 decimal digits of pi. This year, he recited 56 digits! Xan also won our award for best sport! In case you’re curious, these are the first 56 digits of Pi:
3 .14159265358979323846264338327950288419716939937510582097


Samantha Tedrow leads group of residents singing as she plays guitar
Music Therapist Samantha Tedrow led us in a singalong. The room fills with the sounds of everyone singing “High Hopes” by Frank Sinatra.


Elizabeth Whitehouse poses with Steffan Barahona and David Savoy after she wins pie eating contest
And the winner is… Elizabeth Whitehouse (center of both photos). She was not outpaced by colleagues Steffan Barahona (l) & David Savoy (r), though David did challenge her to a rematch next year.


We followed up with each of our contestants after the event, and they all agreed they would do it all again, though it might be a few days before they recover enough to want another slice of pie.

Catch some live-action shots from the event. Watch this video created by spring intern, Tessa Trosman.


As Corporate Director of Marketing & Communications, Kathie Miller provides strategic guidance and tactical support for all areas of Goodwin Living. She writes, edits and manages The Good Life blog and newsletter. Kathie joined GHI in 2014 after nearly 15 years at NPR, where she honed her skills in brand and reputation management, content marketing and internal communications. Originally from Pennsylvania, Kathie has slowly come to realize she’s lived in Arlington for more than half her life and should call herself a Virginian. She enjoys the outdoors and brings her rescue dog, Remi, to work every day.


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