By Heather Fabritze
Student Life Editor
Fall Family Weekend functions as an opportunity for parents and other family members to see WC students while simultaneously experiencing the culture of campus and all that it has to offer. They can do so through attending events put on by the college, its partners, and Chestertown.
Friday started off from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. with a tour of the River and Field Campus, hosted by the Center for Environment and Society. Those interested had to pre-register for a spot in this event. Any parents who arrived early could then visit the Alumni House to check-in, have light refreshments, and receive name tag lanyards.
Later that evening, from 5 to 7 p.m., the Underwood Lobby hosted a meet and mingle with WC President Michael Sosulski, allowing parents the opportunity to introduce themselves to various administration and staff members. Overlapping this event was a sunset cruise on WC’s research vessel the Callinectes from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Finally, Friday rounded out with a performance by the United States Naval Academy Band, starting at 7:30 p.m. in Hotchkiss Recital Hall.
On Saturday morning, families attended the Chestertown Farmer’s Market, which runs from 8 a.m. to noon every Saturday. This was followed by an open house at WC’s Hillel House and a Chester River paddling program sponsored by CES.
Open houses continued from 10 a.m. to noon, with various offices around campus opening their doors for curious parents. Some of these included the Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience, the Rose O’Neill Literary House, the Past is Present Archaeology Lab, and the Global Education Office.
In the McLain Atrium, science, technology, engineering, and mathematics students presented their John S. Toll Science and Mathematics Program summer projects from 1 to 2 p.m., while the Callinectes hosted 45 minute tours of the Chester River.
There was also live music at the waterfront from the Petty Bandits, a Tom Petty cover band featuring WC Associate Professor of Music, Ethnomusicology, Percussion, Electroacoustic Music and Production/Recording Kenneth Schweitzer. Treats from local food trucks were also available, including Italian ice and desserts.
Starting at 1 p.m., families could pick up earth oven pizzas, meet the campus chickens, and explore fruit tree and berry bushes at the Campus Garden. Interested attendees also had the opportunity to ride ponies on the Campus Green for $5 at an event sponsored by the WC Equestrian Team.
Equestrian English Team Captain junior Riley Murray was thrilled with the attendance for their event and encouraged attendees to feed the ponies.
“The turnout exceeded our expectations and the ponies behaved wonderfully for being in a new environment,” Murray said.
The day rounded out with a women’s field hockey game against St. Mary’s College of Maryland and the 31st Annual Phi Delta Theta Crab Feast in Martha Washington Square.
Fall Family Weekend finished Sunday morning at 10 a.m. with a brunch for first-year students, parents, staff, and those involved in the Orientation Explore! program. The event featured a slideshow of photos and videos from this year’s Explore! Experience.
Freshman Jeffrey Hendricks described the weekend as fun and focused on those he was able to reunite with.
“It was good to see my family,” Hendricks said.
Meanwhile, freshman Nick Spigler took full advantage of the weekend to showcase what life in WC and Chestertown is like to his family.
“Even though there’s not a lot around Chestertown, it’s nice to have some kind of small areas you can go to…I can show them what my life has been like for the last few weeks,” Spigler said.
Photo by Katie Tack
Photo Caption: The Campus Garden cooked pizzas for attendees during Fall Family Weekend with their genuine earth oven.