What do students do when the Thanksgiving holiday arrives and they are staying on campus? Going out for some turkey and cranberry sauce is impossible. “We looked for a restaurant for an hour and a half,” according to Brianne Rhodes ’01. “Nothing was open. Our original plan was to prepare our own meal, but all the markets were closed.” Luckily, some quick thinking led her and her friends to one of the few restaurants open, the Hotel Northampton. They ended their night with some pie and TV back in their dorm.
As Rhodes and her friends drove around Northampton, 20 Amherst students were having a Thanksgiving feast on campus in Cohan Dormitory, complete with every Thanksgiving delight imaginable. Five students spent the day cooking for what turned out to be a “nice, modest get-together,” according to coordinator Tammy Jezek ’01.
International student Valentin Burlacu ’04, who celebrated his first Thanksgiving, attended the Cohan meal and found the food to be tasty, although he was unsure about the purpose of the holiday. “I went there and ate. It was very good. I liked it,” he said. “I don’t know exactly what Thanksgiving is. I didn’t even translate the name.”
You may have naively assumed that you had thought of all the possible uses of our beloved trays in Valentine, the most apparent being to transport your food and to provide a makeshift sled during the winter. Well think again, there is yet another. You guessed it: interpretive dance.
The students involved in Cartesian/Split, an improvisational collaboration between music and dance, brilliantly timed their advertisement during dinner two weeks ago, appearing in West and the
mezzanine. They were previewing their performance in the Experimental Theater on Nov. 30, Dec. 1 and 2. Choreographed by Kerry Schaefer ’01, the tray-spinning dance spectacle was a segment from one of the dances in the production, performed live in Valentine.
“I’ve always wanted to be a dancer,” said Adam Roffman ’02, who helped with the publicity event. “By letting me hold up a sign at the end of her part, [Kerry] has fulfilled my life-long dream.”
Campus Center regulars may have noticed that the former concrete wall on the Merrill side of the Campus Center has recently been transformed into a more modern, structured pathway. Though the majority of the population may not care, a good number of students are quite excited about this new landscaping development. Brooke Diamond ’03 ecstatically exclaimed, “It changed my life, my whole way of thinking!” Kelly Potanka ’03 was equally jubilant. “The walk from Merrill to the Campus Center for late-night coffee is made so much easier,” she said.
The new shortcut gives students a path to the main entrance which is both ten feet shorter and without obstruction; since the change, traffic on this path has greatly increased. This either attests to Amherst
students’ laziness, love of efficiency, or inherent fear that they would take a spill in an attempt to scale the now-removed wall. While the appeal of the new gap may be a combination of all three, the last forms the most compelling argument for the renovation.
Without a doubt, there was a collective sigh of relief when the pathway was installed: no more potentially embarrassing feats of athleticism to be faced every day when confronted with stepping over the dreaded wall. Love the change or hate it, any student will tell you that the journey to the Campus Center is now less treacherous than it was before.