Snow is finally on the ground, and the Williams College Winter Carnival is fast approaching. This year’s carnival begins on Thursday, February 17 and runs through Saturday, Feb. 19. The theme of the 2000 festivities is Moovin’ with the Times, a celebratory commemoration of the past century.
The carnival itself is a very historical and long-standing tradition at Williams College. It is the only carnival in the country that is entirely student-run. This year’s chairman, Tom LaRocca ’00, has been working hard with the Williams Outing Club to make Moovin’ with the Times a great success.
The first Williams College Winter Carnival occurred on Feb. 27, 1915 and was a far cry from the carnivals that are organized today. A mere ten students gathered at Weston Field and participated in 100 and 440-yard dashes on skis and snowshoes and a mile long race around the campus.
Now skiers from all over the Northeast gather at Jiminy Peak and Prospect Mountain to compete in both Nordic and Alpine skiing events. But the weekend is not limited to skiing as, back on campus, students are able to participate in a number of activities.
The carnival unofficially kicks off on Thursday with the Citizen’s Cross Country Race at Weston Field in the afternoon. The night will bring a glimpse back into the 1980s when Run DMC performs at 9 p.m.
The ski races begin on Friday, with hourly shuttles going to Jiminy Peak starting at 9 a.m. and a van leaving for Prospect Mountain at 8:45 a.m.
At Jiminy, the Women’s Giant Slalom first run begins at 9:30 a.m. and is immediately followed by the Men’s Giant Slalom first run.
At 1 p.m. the women will compete in the second run of the Giant Slalom, again followed by the Men’s second run.
At Prospect Mountain, the Women’s 10K Classic Race begins at 10 a.m.; the men will race the 10K Classic Race at 11:15 a.m.
Back on campus, there will be many events to celebrate the snow and a day off from classes. The Winter Carnival Broomball tournament will take place at the Lansing-Chapman Rink; team sign ups are this week in Baxter mailroom. Now that there is snow on campus, there will be snow sculpture contest on Baxter lawn.
Friday afternoon will see snow volleyball and the Mini Winter X Games on Baxter lawn.
Baxter Lounge and Mailroom will host a Grassroots Music concert and a Nintendo competition at the same time. At 3 p.m. the Singled Out gameshow will take over Chapin Steps.
The dining halls are hosting a special Carnival Dinner with foods from different eras Friday evening from five to seven. Winter Carnival Opening Ceremonies officially begin the carnival at 7:30 p.m. at Goodrich Hall with the tossing of the first ski.
At the ceremonies, the ski teams participating in the Carnival will be introduced and many of the Williams College acapella groups will perform. The fireworks display at Weston Field will close the evening at 9:15 p.m.
Saturday dawns bright and early for the skiers. The shuttle schedule is the same as Friday, with the van to Prospect leaving at 8:45 a.m. The vans to Jiminy will leave at 9 a.m. and every hour on the hour after until 1 p.m.
At Jiminy, the Men’s Slalom first run begins at 9:30 a.m. and is followed directly by the Women’s Slalom first run. The Men’s Slalom second run begins at 1 p.m. followed by the women’s second run.
At Prospect, the Women’s 10K Freestyle Pursuit Race begins at 9 a.m. and the Men’s 10K Freestyle Pursuit Race begins at 10 a.m. The awards ceremony for the carnival is at 3:15 p.m. at Jiminy Peak.
After all the skiing is finished on Saturday, the Moovin’ with the Times theme continues with house parties back on campus. Each house will be a different time period, so head around campus and experience them all.