Winter Blues? Mercersburg Shines Blue!

Tuesday, February 4, 2020
Allison Jones ’20

The winter season at Mercersburg brings a special energy to campus. The cold weather doesn’t stop students from enjoying the 300 acres we are situated on. Although the winter term has the fewest weekends of all the terms, students can still find many things to do. 

Every year students hope for snow, and when it finally comes, the senior class welcomes it with the Boxer-Bikini Run. On the night of the first snowfall, seniors suit up in boxer shorts and bikinis to run by all the dorms cheering. The run ends at 1893 House where we beg Mrs. Titus for a snow day. This year the run resulted in an agreement where Mrs. Titus said, “You will get a head’s holiday when you most need it but least expect it.” The senior class took this offer, and we will be holding Mrs. Titus to it. 

In addition to this run, the snow also brings sledding and snowball fights after classes and on the weekends. Lower-middler Isabella Van Ess ’22 says, “My favorite part of winter is just walking around campus and seeing all the snow and realizing how beautiful it is here.” 

Throughout the winter term, you will find students all over campus, both inside and out. With meetings picking up for various organizations, such as prom committee, Irving and Marshall, and many others, students find themselves fully booked during the class week. This makes the weekends even more valuable. 

The all-school pool party inaugurates the new Lloyd Aquatic Center.

Friday nights are normally pretty chill. After PGAs, you can find many students in the dining hall enjoying the new ice cream machine. Then students will head to the gym to cheer on the basketball teams or any other team that is playing that night. Throughout the winter term, there are various events hosted by the Student Activities Committee (SAC) in the Simon Student Center. This year we welcomed Dueling Pianos, a magician, and many others. We even had an all-school pool party to inaugurate the new pool in the Lloyd Aquatic Center! In addition, at the beginning of winter term, the library hosted a Harry Potter event in the Edwards Room. 

Check out this short video of some of our January SAC events. 

The one thing everyone looks forward to during the winter term is Irving-Marshall Week. Instead of exams, the school is divided into two societies, Irving and Marshall, and we participate in a weeklong competition consisting of sporting events, board games, and other activities. The week culminates with Declamation, a speaking contest where five people from each society perform monologues. 

Irving and Marshall Society presidents lead each society’s officers and
declaimers into the dining hall during Irving-Marshall Week 2019.

Irving-Marshall Week is a special tradition for the Mercersburg community. The officers for each society spend the time leading up to the week preparing: coming up with new events and apparel and, most importantly, preparing the declaimers for their big night. Marshall officer Ryan Bland ’21 says, “Sometimes, the winter term feels like it lasts forever, but to me, it really flies by. Throughout the entire term, Marshall is preparing for Irving-Marshall Week. It’s a lot of planning and behind-the-scenes meetings for Declamation, but the real fun is when the whole campus can get involved. My personal favorite lead-up event to Irving-Marshall Week is the Irving-Marshall Phonathon, which sets such an exciting and competitive mood around campus before the week even begins!” This week brings a different kind of energy to our school. It brings the school together though a common goal of winning. 

The winter term is jammed with activities, but students can always find time for themselves. Sundays are definitely the quietest days on campus. You will usually find students studying in the library or the dining hall. For everyone on campus, Sunday is a catch-up day. Whether it be catching up on your favorite show, work, or cleaning your room, you will find all of us taking time to relax. 

Winter can bring the blues, but Mercersburg shines blue. Our never-ending spirit doesn’t disappear when the weather turns cold. Instead, the endless activities keep us busy and engaged with our community, and before we know it, Spring Break is here, and warmer weather is on its way. 

Editor’s Notes: Allison Jones ’20, from West Chester, PA, is a dorm prefect in South Cottage and is in her fourth year at Mercersburg. Her mother, Nancy Gallagher Jones ’86, and sister, Lauren Jones ’18, are both alums, and her sister, Isabella Jones ’22, is a current student.