Lawrence revives Winter Carnival tradition

Maija Anstine

The Lawrence University Winter Carnival will take place Feb. 4 and 5 at various locations around campus. The revival of the event is the brainchild of Student Affairs in an effort to enliven Winter Term.
All activities throughout the weekend are free. Among other events, the weekend will include a broomball tournament, an ice sculpture contest and the President’s Winter Carnival ball.
The 2011 Winter Carnival marks the return of an “on-and-off tradition from the ’30s,” explained Curt Lauderdale, assistant dean of students for campus life. “We’re making 2011 an ‘on’ year.”
Lauderdale collaborated with Ormsby Residence Hall Director and Diversity Center Programs Coordinator Rose Wasielewski, Campus Center Director Greg Griffin, Assistant Dean of Students for Multicultural Affairs Pa Lee Moua and Plantz Residence Hall Director and Campus Life Programs Coordinator Marianne Griffin ’08 to design and organize the event.
“I thought we should put some more fun into the middle of Winter Term,” said President Jill Beck.
Wasielewski agreed with this sentiment especially, she said, in “a time when students are hunkered down for the winter. We hope there’s a strong showing.”
Leslie Fox ’11, who learned about the contest through the huge advertisements posted in her dorm, is “most excited for the ice sculpture contest, which I have entered, and the Canadian maple taffy making.”
Fox says she “might also attend the President’s Winter Carnival Ball,” which marks the end of Winter Carnival festivities, at 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 5. Wasielewski expressed enthusiasm about the event, saying: “People are really excited to have this moment for everyone to come together.”
“But, if the ball’s not your thing, then maybe broomball is,” Wasielewski continued, noting that several groups have already contacted her about organizing their own broomball teams. The broomball tournament will take place starting at 4 p.m. Friday, Feb. 4 and will continue Saturday afternoon outside of Ormsby on the “Ormsby Lake.”
Student Affairs has made an attempt to integrate diverse aspects of campus life into the weekend celebration by including events like the LU Hockey game vs. Northland College, and the Lawrence Jazz Band and Symphonic Band concert on Friday evening.
The Winter Carnival tradition started in the 1930s, and has traditionally included activities such as ski trips, tug-of-war and sitting by the Memorial Union hearth. Activities like the broomball tournament and ice sculpture contest were also enjoyed during the Winter Carnival’s early years; in 1933, one team even crafted a chapel made entirely out of ice. Pictures from the decade can be viewed in Lawrence’s online archives.
“[The Winter Carnival] will be a welcome addition to the Lawrence calendar,” concluded Fox.
More information and broomball and ice sculpture registration forms are available at