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Celebration Weekend draws 1,300 family, friends

October 14, 2011

Celebration Weekend draws 1,300 family, friends

Skidmore will welcome more than 1,300 family members and friends of current students for its annual Celebration Weekend, scheduled Oct. 14-16 on campus.

The total represents approximately 590 families who have registered for the annual event, which is designed to offer family members a taste of the academic and co-curricular programs available to their students. Those traveling the farthest this year include a family from China and another family from Turkey.

First-year students see the largest number of visitors, according to Megan Mercier, associate director of alumni affairs and college events, who is responsible for the weekend's events. Sophomores also see a significant number of guests, while juniors see the fewest. Members of the senior class are nearly tied with sophomores in terms of visitors. Mercier says that as families realize their student is entering the final year at Skidmore, they get sentimental and want to participate in all the college offers during their student's last year.

Some of the most popular activities at Celebration Weekend are traditional favorites: the annual mini-college, where the spotlight is on Skidmore faculty. Music Professor Gordon Thompson's presentation on the Beatles titled "I Feel Fine" has drawn a lot of interest, according to Mercier. Other presentations will be given by David and Helen Porter, co-authors of a new book on the college's founder. Their program is titled "In Her Own Words: The Life and Times of Lucy Skidmore Scribner." Psychology Professor Hugh Foley will present "The Psychology of Visual Illusions" while "Sustainable Skidmore" will be presented by campus sustainability coordinator Riley Neugebauer.

The annual Career Jam, a networking-job search program spearheaded by the College's Career Services Office with the help of about 40 alumni and parents, will take place from 3 to 5 p.m. Friday in Murray-Aikins Dining Hall. The program is designed to help students in all four classes learn from representativesin various fields about career options and internship and job opportunities.

One activity that is a sell-out is the bus tour of the Saratoga Battlefield. New this year is a walking tour of the North Broadway neighborhood, sponsored by the Saratoga Springs Preservation Foundation. Sara Hallberg Boivin, a 1996 Skidmore graduate, is the foundation's director of membership and programs and helped organize the tour, which will be led by the foundation's Samantha Bosshart. Another favorite family destination is the Saratoga Springs Farmers Market, according to Mercier.

The weekend also features a number of athletic contests, open houses by departments and offices, performances by student dancers, and the always-popular "Under the Big Top," a Saturday night program featuring student entertainers.

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