What Simpson lacks in tradition, it makes up for in May Term

by Andrea McNamara

Homecoming week is in full swing.

The Greeks are busy preparing to dominate this year’s activitiesonce again, making it into yet another Greek Week for SimpsonCollege. Homecoming week seems almost like tradition, but whattraditions do we have that aren’t Greek?

Does Simpson have any kind of tradition at all?

Others schools throughout the conference have varioustraditions: there’s the Lemming Race at Central, there used to beone crazy soccer game at Luther, and the Miracle Mile is run atLoras every year.

Though college administrations frown on these activities and tryto keep alcohol use under wraps, these events have become yearlytraditions during Homecoming week at other schools.

My only question is this: What is our tradition? Though thetraditions hosted by other schools often involve a lot of alcoholand stupidity I still think they are a great way for all studentsto come together.

We have Campus Day, the Stand Around and Yell Like Hell, but arethese really traditions?

All I’m asking for is one incredibly pointless event whereeveryone can participate equally – an event where athletes, Greeksand independents can all show their immaturity and their fun-lovingside.

A rundown of the Lemming Race

The Lemming Race is a stupid event with a stupid name, but greatfun for all that participate. The Lemming Race isn’t really even arace.

Students dress up in whatever stupid outfit they can find. Thenthey all gather together, some drunk and some stone-cold sober, torace to the pond on Central’s campus.

After reaching their destination they all jump in and gather onthe island in the middle of their pond, get their picture taken,and then head back to shore and grab any spectator they can find.The unsuspecting spectator ends up in the pond, wishing that he orshe would have just been a lemming after all.

The annual Lemming Race was regulated by Central’sadministration this year, but was still largely popular. TheLemming Race may be stupid, but it’s a tradition none the less.

A miracle to make it the whole mile

The Miracle Mile is an annual race held at Loras College,usually on the day of Homecoming or on a weekday prior to gameday.

Loras students make teams of five or so people, these teamsstart out at about 7 a.m. and race from house to house. Nobodyreally knows – or even cares – if the teams complete a fullmile.

The object of the race is to be the first team at the last housethat has chugged at least four pitchers of beer at every houseprior to the last. The winning team’s members are awarded T-shirtsproclaiming them the “winners” of the miracle mile, and acollective monetary amount of $50.

“The $50 is usually put towards a keg,” said Brian LeClere, asenior at Loras College.

The administration will not permit this event, so it is usuallydone secretly, LeClere said.

These traditions, and others like them, plague small campusesacross Iowa, but not Simpson.

As I watched the Lemming Race this year at Central I wondered,”Why can’t Simpson have an incredibly stupid event like this?”

At the Lemming Race I saw all kinds of students gather togetherto partake in one incredibly ridiculous tradition: freshmen andupper-classmen, Greeks and independents alike.

Then it hit me.

There is a wonderful tradition at Simpson – one like no othercollege has known.

The tradition of May Term

We don’t have stupid races or even a reward, but I think theexperience itself is reward enough. May Term is something that allstudents can enjoy. Usually May Term involves at least one or twohazy nights, a few trips to The Zoo, one really great T-shirt fromPRSSA and memories that last a lifetime.

Some people learn to fish, others prepare for life withinternship opportunities, but everyone has a great time when theweekend rolls around.

In retrospect it’s quite possibly the best tradition that I’veever heard of.

May Term, is far from the pointless traditions at other schoolsin one aspect – it’s at the mercy of the administration.

Recent rumors suggest the administration at Simpson is stillconsidering the usefulness of May Term, and it may not have manymore years here at Simpson. For the student body, it’s necessary.May Term is a tradition everyone can look forward to, and one morereason why students will never forget Simpson.