From a fireworks display and a barbecue, to trips to the Farmers Market and Taughannock Falls, Ithaca College is making sure that the Labor Day weekend is a memorable one for both new and returning students. This opening weekend of the academic year — dubbed First Bomber Weekend — will provide students with a whole host of activities Sept. 1–4 designed to help them have fun getting to know both one another and the local community.
Things kick off on Friday with the IConnection Carnival and Fountain Fest, at which first-year students will throw a cupful of water into the iconic Dillingham Center fountains, earning them the right to throw themselves into the water in four years during the traditional Senior Class Fountain Jump.
Once darkness falls on Friday night, the skies over South Hill will light up with a spectacular fireworks show, celebrating the college’s new students, new president and 125th anniversary. The 15-minute display will begin at about 9:30 p.m., with the fireworks launched from the Upper Allen football practice field, which is located near the main entrance to campus off Rt. 96B.
For those inclined to get physical, Saturday’s events include morning yoga, use of the Fitness Center’s climbing wall and some competitive sand volleyball games. Free busses will take students to and from the Ithaca Farmers Market in the middle of the day, while evening will bring the opportunity to kick back with some popcorn to watch a showing of the 1986 comedy classic, “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.”
Sunday has been designated as Downtown Day, with free TCAT transportation from campus to the Ithaca Commons and back. Students will get to enjoy the best of local offerings, with samples and discounts inside shops and eateries. Entertainment will be provided at the Bernie Milton Pavilion by Ithaca College student groups.
Students will get to gorge out on Monday. Any calories burned off by the trip to Taughannock Falls State Park for hiking and swimming can be put back on later in the afternoon, as the cherry on top of First Bomber Weekend features an ice cream sundae social on the Quad.
First Bomber Weekend is a collaborative program sponsored by the Offices of Residential life, Alumni Relations, Recreational Sports, Public Safety and First Year Residential Experience. It began in 2014 as an effort to provide programming to the college’s newest students during the long Labor Day Weekend, aimed at familiarizing these students with each other, the campus community and the surrounding Ithaca area. The program has grown annually in terms of offerings and participation, with students from all classes taking part this year.