People were antsy, bags were getting packed, and sighs of relief were audible as midterms and papers were finished and turned in, and the anticipation of returning home for Thanksgiving break grew. In the midst of all the work, lectures, discussions, and various activities on campus, I woke up one morning to an email from our Student Government Association (SGA) and Student Programming Board (SPB) declaring that it was “Spontaneous Fun Day!” I was told to be on the lookout in our student center, Pulver, for activities and surprises throughout the day. I didn’t realize how much I had needed something unexpected and fun to brighten the bleak November days and the long countdown of the last few days before heading home until I got that e-mail; I could barely sit through my first class!
I walked into Pulver that morning to free “Spontaneous Fun Day” shirts being thrown off the balcony, gelato and hot chocolate to cool down or warm up with, a cookie decorating station, and shutter shades and trucker hats. Music was blasting from the quad and you could FEEL the energy boost on campus as students went from dazed disbelief as they walked in, to fully embracing the chance to laugh, blow off steam, forget papers and midterms and just relax together. I know that a great deal of planning went into this “spontaneous” fun day, but it was the sheer unexpectedness of it, the gift of a surprise, that added to the whole fun and experience of the day. While I have thanked my close friends on SGA and SPB for putting in the time to plan the event during a time that was, for them also, very hectic, I also want to thank those who I do not know as well: members of the administration who supported the event behind the scenes, and everyone who thought outside of the box to meet students’ needs beyond the classroom at this stressful time of year. The energy from Spontaneous Fun Day got me through the last few days, and on the plane home to Minneapolis!