This weekend, more than 1,300 people will tour the Ithaca College campus, meet faculty and staff and attend special events as a part of its seventh annual Family Weekend.
The event is an opportunity for parents to explore the campus and experience their children’s lives at college. Doreen Hettich-Atkins, coordinator of special services and programs in the Office of Student Affairs and Campus Life, scheduled and planned this weekend’s event, which includes speakers, open houses, tours and performances.
“Family Weekend is a chance for students to show off their college to their parents [but] not at the stressful times such as move-in and breaks,” she said.
Several events have been coordinated with the James J. Whalen Center for Music including performances by the Concert Band and Vocal Jazz Ensemble on Friday, Symphonic Band and Jazz Workshop on Saturday and Choral Ensembles on Sunday. Hettich-Atkins said Family Weekend will host its third Student Performances Showcase on Saturday in Emerson Suites.
“Last year they performed to a full house,” Hettich-Atkins said.
Ithaca’s theater department will also put on a production of “The Full Monty” Friday and Saturday. Ticketed events such as plays, select concerts, athletic events and luncheons are included in the weekend’s fee of $46.50 per person.
Other events include stargazing at the Ford Observatory on Friday, open houses for each of the five schools, a tour of the Handwerker Gallery on Saturday and a 5k run and walk on Sunday.
Hettich-Atkins said the events are open to all parents, and some parents come every year their child is at the college.
Junior Genevieve Labe said this will be her mother’s third Family Weekend and her grandmother’s first.
“[My grandmother is] coming from [a vacation in] Morocco,” Labe said. “Because of the dates working out, she’s going to come up here with my mom.”
Labe said she tries to participate in as many activities as she can with her family.
“I have to study and work, but I do as much as I can,” she said. “We definitely go to the shows and go to see the performances. When it comes to people talking, she goes to that and I don’t.”
Freshman Kevin Michels’ parents will visit from Pennsylvania, and his grandparents are coming from Delaware.
He said his family decided the weekend would be a good chance to visit and was excited for many of the events.
“My mom signed up for the ticket packages mainly because she wanted to see ‘The Full Monty,’” Michels said.
Michels said he was happy to hear that there are a lot of activities planned because so many students would otherwise feel overwhelmed and not know what to do to entertain and inform their parents all weekend.
Freshman Kailey Denzer-Weiler’s family will not be attending Family Weekend since she said her mother has visited several times since move-in day. She said she doesn’t mind not being a part of the weekend.
“For a lot of people, their parents can’t make it, and some people say it’s not necessarily worth it,” she said. “You can really see Ithaca on other weekends too.”
Labe’s family will be staying at a hotel in downtown Ithaca. According to Labe, she and her mother tried to share Labe’s single the first year. Labe took the floor and sacrificed the bed to her mother for a night.
“I hadn’t shared space with her for a while,” she said. “We both decided it would be better to never have her stay in my room again. We are happier that way.”