“B6, B6, B6,” she repeated under her breath. She sat on the edge of her seat waiting for the number looming on the bottom left corner of her bingo card to be called. The small, white ball was pulled from the cage. A student from the Campus Activities Board [CAB] read “B…” followed by the classic pause, before adding, “seven.” A loud, distasteful exclamation came from the back of the room: “BINGO!”
The mother of a first-year Springfield College student slouched back into her chair, watching the lucky winner from the back of the room claim her prize. That Coca-Cola mini-fridge would’ve looked very nice squeezed into her son’s Gulick Hall closet.
Friday night, hundreds of students welcomed their families to the Springfield College campus with a traditional game of Bingo. While many are first introduced to the game at some point in elementary school, and likely again once they reach their elderly years, it is not typically a game played in college.
At Springfield College, that is a different story. Bingo night is one of the most energized and organized events that the college has to offer. With popular prizes and the highly entertaining dance battle, it was an electrifying beginning to Family Weekend.
Another feature of the weekend was in the Learning Commons. For the very first time, it featured an escape room. This event turned out to be very popular, with time slots that filled quickly. “The escape room was a good way to interact with my family, it was a lot of fun,” said freshman Isaiah Pantojas. “I really enjoyed being able to show [my family] around campus, and have fun at the same time.”
Annie Warchol, Director of Student Activities and Campus Union, explained that “[Family Weekend] is meant to provide a small sampling of the many offerings that the [Springfield College] has.” Events like bingo and trivia are a few traditions Springfield College students embrace right from the start, during New Student Orientation.
The large, white heated tent on Naismith Green featured activities and entertainment all day. The band “Fever” had parents up and dancing, while others participated in making customized mugs and pennants. Students and guests of all ages enjoyed their kettle corn and lemonade, as they tried to win prizes by participating in family trivia.
Typically, the weekend is selected to coincide with a Saturday afternoon football game. However this year, that was not the case. With the football team on the road at Catholic University in Washington, D.C., the men’s and women’s soccer teams, as well as the field hockey team, shared the athletics spotlight.
Saturday night, world-record holder for balloon sculpting speed, John Cassidy brought his talents to Springfield College in a spirited performance. Visitors were welcomed with free ice cream and snacks, and the opportunity to win a balloon or even money. The event incorporated comedy with magic, and engaged the whole crowd. “It was hilarious,” said Pantojas.
The creativity of the Family Weekend committee was in full force when pitching the idea of a “Dive-In Movie.” Following Cassidy’s performance, students and families gathered in the Art Linkletter Natatorium to enjoy Finding Dory while swimming in the pool.
“It is a chance for families and students to reconnect after dropping off their student here, and the students not seeing their families [since then],” Warchol said.
Family Weekend provided a fun and engaging scene for all who participated in the activities. It was a valuable time for families to reunite, as well as for students to stock up on snacks and receive everything else they had forgotten at home.
Photo courtesy of Marketing & Communications