Central Campus' Fall Fest offered something for everyone

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By: Linda Griffith

Gray skies, rain in the weather forecast – one could be forgiven for thinking the weather man had a hangover. But sure enough, the morning of Fall Fest at Central Campus dawned cool and overcast with grumpy clouds threatening to dampen the festivities. Luckily for all involved, the threat of thunderstorms and rain remained exactly that – and the Fest went off without a hitch.

I spent almost two hours wondering between the tents, sampling food and taking in the variety of exhibits. I couldn’t help but be lured to the Study Abroad tent where the pastries were on display in a glass box at eye level and could not be ignored.

Donna Apgar, director of language learning technology and study abroad coordinator, explained that the club is raising funds for next summer’s emersion trips to France and Mexico. They were selling Starbucks coffee for $1 a cup and at that price who could refuse?

In a matter of a few short seconds I managed to scoop up two chocolate éclairs and a hot beverage and headed for the steps to watch Robin Rogers and Her Hot Band belting it out on the lower quad.

It’s always a treat to have live music on campus and Robin Rogers certainly fulfilled her mandate to provide it between 10a.m. and 2 p.m. Her voice sounds as though it starts deep, deep down and carried throughout the quad and across Elizabeth Avenue. Students hovered on the upper level watching her band perform, eating lunch, catching up and letting the blues wash over them.

The American Institute of Architectural Students put on a truly impressive catering affair, and the lunch options were by far the best value to be had anywhere in the neighborhood. Working backwards having started with dessert, I couldn’t help but reach out for a hamburger and bratwurst. After all – Fall Fest is about supporting these organizations at any level. Their tent was large and professional and surrounded by hungry customers.

Hoping that nobody was trailing my gluttonous path, I meandered over to the Visual Arts Club where artwork was on display and Carol Whitman was painting the cutest portrait of a little girl (from a photograph) on a very little canvas. Her rendition was so life-like I wanted to lean over and squeeze the little girl’s cheek. Impressive artwork was displayed on easels in an almost gallery type setting.

Model UN is a re-emerging club having been dormant for a year or two. Three of their four members – the last was writing a test, are looking for members with political and international interests. They meet to discuss world events and politics and often compete with other universities and colleges, writing papers and researching various countries.

They almost had me with their homemade chocolate, and being a native South African I presume I fit the profile, but before I could sign up I was magnetically drawn towards the American Welding Society tent where a bunch of beefy boys with hammers were beating a searing-hot iron rod into submission.

I confess to always having had a curiosity about welding. Perhaps it’s the thought of taking something so incredibly hard and twisting and bending it into a fluid shape that holds the fascination. Clearly I am not alone as the tent seemed to be attracting a lot of attention, not least because their advisor was wearing a kilt and on a windy day that’s always head turning.

During my rounds I stumbled upon the Surgical Technology tent. They had four black boxes displayed with a surgical definition on each and an assortment of intriguing shiny surgical instruments I couldn’t help but handle , although at one stage I did rather regret my recent binge eating. Did you know that the cut into a body is called an incision and body parts can spill out of it during surgery? Pass the scalpel please.

Across from Student Life, where an explanation of what voting for CPCC bonds was on offer, the Stage Door Set, widely known as the Drama Club, were providing impromptu live music of their own with a swinging membership dancing and carousing to their own drums. It looked like fun, but my travels had brought me full circle to the Study Abroad Club and guess what – there was one chocolate éclair left – but not for long.