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The College hosts first open Family Weekend since pandemic

October 21, 2022

This weekend, one of the College’s favorite traditions will return as parents, siblings and grandparents flock to campus for Family Weekend. After an abnormal few years of festivities spurred by the pandemic, this year’s Family Weekend is anticipated to be largely similar to pre-pandemic weekends.

Executive Director of Events and Summer Programs Tony Sprague has overseen the weekend’s planning and is looking forward to a return to normalcy.

“In many ways, the weekend programming is very similar to what we had looked at for the weekends that were 2019 and earlier,” Sprague said.

He specifically noted the return of the opportunity for family members to sit in on classes, which has not happened since the onset of the pandemic. Many, including the family of Rachel Scruby ’25, are looking forward to taking advantage of these open classes.

“My brother’s also coming, and I think he wanted to maybe go to some classes,” Scruby said. “He just finished his master’s [degree] … so this is a great opportunity for him to see different teaching styles because he didn’t go to a small school.”

While open classes indicate a weekend similar to pre-pandemic Family Weekends, Sprague said that there are a few approaches from the pandemic that will carry over. The President’s Research Symposium will be held outdoors rather than in Morrell Gym, as Sprague said that holding the event on the Main Quad in 2021 was popular with students, faculty and administrators alike. The Symposium will take place at 1:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.

“For things like Sarah and James Bowdoin Day … we definitely will try to livestream those events so that people that can’t make it here in-person can still feel like they can participate and be able to watch those,” Sprague said.

The Sarah and James Bowdoin Day Celebration will begin at 4:00 p.m. at Farley Field House. The celebration, featuring addresses from Associate Professor of Asian Studies and English Belinda Kong and Dylan Richmond ’24, recognizes students who earned grade point averages in the top 20 percent of their class.

On Saturday, a series of talks will be offered by the College, including a Q&A session with President Clayton Rose, Senior Vice President and Dean for Academic Affairs Jennifer Scanlon and Senior Vice President and Dean for Student Affairs Janet Lohmann in Daggett Lounge at 9 a.m. Lectures from professors of the History and Biology departments will also be given. These events will be livestreamed for those unable to make it to campus.

The Saturday Group Performance Showcase, complete with performances from a capella and dance groups, is scheduled for 7 p.m. in Farley Field House. This event has historically been one of the most popular among parents and students, according to Sprague.

The weekend will wind down on Sunday with a 5K run at 9 a.m. behind Farley, Jazz Brunch in Thorne Dining Hall featuring student performances and a performance from the Bowdoin College Concert Band from 2 to 4 p.m. in Kanbar Auditorium.


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