What better way to ring in the fall season than by going apple picking with your family? That was one of the several fun options students and their families had during Parents and Family Weekend held from Oct. 4 to Oct. 6.
Parents and Family Weekend is a yearly tradition here at Quinnipiac. Students have a chance to host their families for the weekend, and several fun events are held on campus for parents to participate in with their students.
The schedule of events began on Friday, Oct. 4. Parents who were able to make it on Friday had the option to attend a women’s field hockey game at 3 p.m. and later attend a Jewish Shabbat Dinner at the Peter C. Herald House for Jewish Life from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Finally, to enjoy the cooler weather and the Halloween holiday season, families could enjoy the movie, “Halloweentown,” at 8 p.m. in Buckman Theater presented by Quinnipiac’s Film Society.
On Saturday, Oct. 5, the full schedule of events guaranteed fun for all. Families could start the day off with free breakfast in the dining hall from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Quinnipiac’s Sustainability Committee sponsored the Artisan Craft Fair and Farmers Market again this year that was held in the Athletic and Recreation Center from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., giving parents and students the chance to buy handcrafted, upcycled decor and other goods. Families could also choose to paint a custom wood sign as a decoration piece in exchange for a $30 donation to the charity, United Way.
Quinnipiac’s Film Society showed “Halloweentown” again on Saturday afternoon for those who missed the original showing on Friday night, but the events with the highest interest were the newly added family cooking classes hosted by Chartwells and Bobcat Family Bingo hosted by the Student Programming Board. Families were required to register in advance in order to participate in each of the events and spots filled up quick. Interest was so high that an additional session was added for each. These events replaced Fall in the Halls with the Residence Council and students’ performance of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” in the Theater Arts Center that took place during the 2018 Parents and Family Weekend.
The cooking class was held in the dining hall from 10 to 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. The class introduced attendees to the history and origins of sushi, including fish preparation techniques, the importance of rice preparation and the actual rolling of sushi.
Bobcat family bingo took place from 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. and 3 to 4:30 p.m. in the Mount Carmel Auditorium. Families could play to win some merchandise from the bookstore.
Those looking for a more creative outlet had the chance to attend salsa lessons in the Studio B in the Athletic and Recreation Center. A professional dance instructor held lessons from 2 to 3 p.m. for parents and students who wished to learn a new skill.
Frank Frasca, whose daughter Sophia Frasca is a freshman this year, said the events were very nice, particularly the Family Fest on the Quad.
For those who were not able to attend a cooking lesson or a bingo session, the Family Fest held on the Quad from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. provided an opportunity for students and their families to participate in carnival games, enjoy a live band, buy from food trucks and enjoy fun novelties and crafts. Family Fest on the Quad closely resembled 2018’s Parents and Family Weekend’s Night on the Boardwalk, also sponsored by the Student Programming Board. Students and their families were able to enjoy food, games and novelties.
This year’s Saturday activities ended much earlier than last year’s. Last year, parents had the opportunity to attend Rocktopia, a live concert presented exclusively for the Quinnipiac community. The show took place in the Toyota Oakdale Theatre in Wallingford. Before the show, parents who purchased VIP tickets were able to attend a cocktail hour and a meet and greet with the members of Rocktopia. However, parents seemed to enjoy the weekend regardless.
James and Lucy Majoros, who attended Parents and Family Weekend this year and last year, are avid sports fans. The events they enjoyed the most were the women’s ice hockey game against Providence and the women’s soccer game against Monmouth. They also really enjoyed the chili stations that were located on the Quad near Tator Hall and also on the lawn outside the dining hall. Overall, they found this year’s schedule of events to be more enjoyable than last year’s.
“I liked [both years], but I’d say maybe this year was a little better,” James Majoros said.
The family attended Parents and Family Weekend in 2018, but felt there was not as much to do as this year because the weekend’s main event in 2018 was the Rocktopia concert.
“I felt last year [Rocktopia] was the big thing, but there were less little things where this year there was a lot more little things which I like better since we were not interested in Rocktopia,” Lucy Majoros said.
Aside from all the great events hosted on campus over the weekend, the brochure parents received upon arrival listed recommendations for places to eat, shopping malls and nearby orchards for apple picking in the crisp, autumn weather. Families could make their way over to Lyman Orchards in Middlefield or Norton Brothers Fruit Farm in Cheshire for apple picking, or they could enjoy the various shopping centers and dining locations in Hamden and New Haven.
The weekend ended off on Sunday with Catholic Mass held at both 9 a.m. and 11a.m., and a women’s volleyball game against Manhattan at 1 p.m.
Parents, of course, made their way to the bookstore to buy some apparel for themselves and their students, and families said goodbye as the fun weekend came to an end.