Scouting for New Traditions
Let’s not be naive: colleges and universities “steal” traditions all the time (though in deference to the Honor System, let’s just say “share”). For instance, legend has it that U.Va. adopted it’s orange-and-blue school colors from a scarf that a student had recently brought back from Princeton University — and that those colors were subsequently “shared” with Auburn University.
In that vein, Ithaca College in upstate New York has a cool New Year’s tradition. Apparently, there are two fairly tall residential halls, located side-by-side atop a hill, that have nice, orderly windows. By putting lights in some of the windows and keeping the others dark, Ithaca’s version of Facilities Management can spell out the last two digits of the year — one digit in each building. At the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve, they change the lighting pattern to the digits of the new year.
Here’s a behind-the-scences video:
The obvious question: Can it be done at U.Va.? Are there buildings with suitable windows that can be seen reasonably well? Would anything at the hospital work? Or is this just redundant, since Lighting of the Lawn is already well-established?
(Note: Hat tip to Ithaca resident Amy Cronin, the former chief of staff for former U.Va. President John T. Casteen III, who shared the video on her Facebook page.)