The Tercentenary Theatre was converted into a colorful, albeit slightly damp, minicarnival, Friday (Sept. 12) as Harvard College welcomed its returning and newest undergraduates to campus for an afternoon and evening of food, friends, and fun.
Despite the rain, the mood was festive as the young crowd waited patiently in line, umbrellas in hand, to enter the impromptu fair nestled between Memorial Church and Widener Library.
The theme of the event, organized by the College Events Board with the help of Jason McCoy, 2008-09 Fellow for Campus Life, was that of a boardwalk and came complete with a dizzying orange and green ride that resembled a series of hang gliders strung together in a spinning circle, basketball and target practice games, balloon hats, and a wide array of carnival food including cotton candy, ice cream, candied apples, and a vegetarian version of the popular corn dog.
Reconnecting with friends was a main objective for many of the attendees.
“This is a good time to see everyone,” said Patrick Lahue ’09, a Winthrop House resident and psychology major who was looking forward to catching up with his classmates.
Included in the fun was the music of Peter C. Shields Jr. ’09, aka “Petros,” Harvard’s resident pop star with Greek roots and an album to his credit. Shields looked the part, taking the granite stage in front of Memorial Church clad in a tight-fitting T-shirt, and jeans, and accompanied by dancing girls in black miniskirts and sequined belts. He delivered his song “V.I.P.” to shrieks from the crowd and acknowledged his fans with a hearty shout out: “I feel so much love right now, it’s awesome.”
Also on hand and sharing the love, though in a slightly more subdued fashion, was Harvard University President Drew Faust. Carrying a large white and crimson umbrella, Faust made her way through the event with ease, chatting with students and happily posing for photos.
Christian Free ’10 caught up with his classmates as he stood in the impressively long line for fried dough. The junior was at once introspective and pragmatic when asked why he was waiting so long in the snaking queue for the tasty treat. “We were just asking ourselves the same thing,” he laughed. His conclusion after some consideration: “We love fried dough, and it’s free.”