By Tom Byron

Colorado College’s annual Family and Friends Weekend brought hundreds of parents, siblings, relatives, and friends to campus this year. More than a dozen separate events, which included multiple sponsored meals, three soccer games, and a dance party, took place between Friday and Sunday. The number and variety of planned events ensured that neither parents nor students would lack for things to do.

On Friday, one of the main attractions was the Afro-Cuban Salsa band Son Como Son, brought to campus by a CC student whose mother is part of the band. Son Como Son came to CC all the way from Albuquerque, N.M., and impressed parents and students alike with their music and charm. The band performed both at the Sense of Place lunch on Friday and at the salsa lesson held on Tava Quad later that night. In both instances, their music was extraordinary, and at the latter, the dance floor was packed for nearly two hours as students and their families learned the steps of the salsa.

“It was so wonderful to have my family on campus,” Isabella McShea ’20 said. “The salsa dancing blew them away, and I really enjoyed giving my brother a taste of college life.”

The Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at CC also saw many visitors during the weekend, thanks to the free admission for all guests of CC students. Both the permanent and temporary exhibitions were on
display, and people could choose between two different plays: “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time” and “Busytown: The Musical.” Becky Wareing Steele, the artist behind the Fine Arts Center’s current temporary exhibition “Utopia: A New Society For All,” gave a talk on how art can
influence and change human societies and guided visitors through the installation.

Saturday started off early with the Colorado Springs 5k, Half Marathon, and Marathon, which gave discounted tickets to CC students and their families. Later that morning, CC President Jill Tiefenthaler
gave a keynote address on the state of the college before turning the floor to alumni, students, and faculty for the Faces of Innovation Panel Discussion. This discussion highlighted how the unique approach of a liberal arts education can help foster interdisciplinary thought and spark innovation.
The discussion honored CC alumni Ryan Banagale, Mark Glaze, Dan Johnson, and Shane Lory for their achievements.

At the CC Community Picnic, families ate lunch on Tava Quad while listening to music performed by CC student organizations like the CC Bluegrass Ensemble and multiple a cappella groups. The school also hosted a tour of the Colorado Springs Pioneer Museum, but despite a large number of online sign ups, only one family showed up to take the tour. The radio station, the Bemis School of Art, and the Esports team all held open houses and demonstrations, and the Honnen Ice Arena was open for students and their families to skate for free. The weekend finished with a Sunday brunch, followed by a game between the CC women’s soccer team and Fresno State university — ending in a slim 0–1 loss for
the Tigers.

“It’s an important weekend … because my parents get to see that I’m doing stuff at school and meet my friends,” Emily Miner ’21 said. “They get to see my classroom and all the things I’ve been talking to them about.”

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