By Michael Samuels 09F
Once a semester, the more than 100 student groups at Hampshire set up tables and try to get new members and more visibility (“Oh, what’s this?” and “Hey, I didn’t know you were in X” are the two most commonly heard sentences at every Hampfest). The event, sponsored by Campus Leadership and Activities, is an opportunity to discover, or at the very least a good reminder, that there’s a lot going on at Hampshire.
Fall Hampfests are in the gym at the Robert Crown Center, and, while different categories of groups are organized in rows, the shared space allows a certain contained chaos.
Spring Hampfests, like the one held February 6, are a calmer counterpoint to the fall events. Housed in Franklin Patterson Hall, the event sees groups separated into different classrooms by category. For students who heard about a group over the last semester, the setup makes it easier to beeline to it. For those who are just browsing, there’s plenty of room to move around without worrying too much about getting winged by a Frisbee or run over by a unicycle.
The seasonal change in location is because of one student group in particular. “It’s hard to take the gym out of commission for a whole evening, with the basketball team practicing for a game,” explains Pam Tinto, associate dean of students for campus leadership and activities.
This Hampfest, CLA also provided hot chocolate, and set up a s’mores station with grills outside the main doors.
What doesn’t change between fall and spring Hampfests is the variety of groups. Divided into separate rooms it might take a little longer to realize, but there’s still something for everyone at Hampfest.