Carnival Planners Dodge Curve Balls, Hope For Snowballs


Throughout this nearly snowless term, the Winter Carnival Council has been keeping a close eye on the weather radar maps.

Image removed.The ice sculptures at last year’s Winter Carnival included this sizable moose. (Photo courtesy of Collis Center for Student Involvement)

“Our council chairs have been thrown some curve balls, but despite the odd weather they have worked tirelessly to make sure we have fun events, and we are moving right along,” says Tiffany Des Cognets, the office manager for the Collis Center for Student Involvement. She works with the five student members of the Winter Carnival Council.

 Things may be moving along a little better now that snow showers have been lightly carpeting the campus and temperatures are starting to drop. But weather-dependent activities are still subject to change. For a full list of events, and to check on updates, see the Winter Carnival Schedule for 2016.

This year’s theme is “Seuss on the Loose.” It’s the fourth time Winter Carnival has honored the literary genius of Theodor Seuss Geisel ’25.  Donald Pease, the Ted and Helen Geisel Third Century Professor in the Humanities, says Winter Carnival was “Ted Geisel’s favorite event in the Dartmouth calendar. He would look forward to it as an inspiration for his cockamamie imagination as well as an occasion to demonstrate his deep sense of belonging to the place.”                                 

Image removed.The winning poster for Winter Carnival 2016 was designed by Anna Miller ’16. (Image courtesy of Collis Center for Student Involvement)


Anna Miller ’16 designed the winning poster, which shows Seuss characters doing what they do best—playing together. The setting is Occom Pond, but the polar plunge that is held there each year may be cancelled or relocated. Hanover Parks and Recreation has nixed the Saturday afternoon pond party, and a shortage of snow could affect the human dogsled races. Would-be mushers are advised to check the website frequently for updates.

The Carnival’s Nordic ski races will move to the Craftsbury Outdoor Center in Vermont. Downhill events will be held Friday and Saturday at Dartmouth Skiway. On Saturday, lift tickets are 99 cents with a Dartmouth ID.

Whatever the weather, ice will appear on the Green—huge blocks of it, trucked in for the ice sculpture contest starting Friday morning.

While Winter Carnival is traditionally a time for enjoying the outdoors, there’s plenty to enjoy indoors, as well, including a variety of music:

  • The Subtleties, Dartmouth’s all-women a capella group, will serenade the torch-lit opening ceremonies on Thursday, returning for the annual Whingding Saturday night in Spaulding Auditorium at the Hopkins Center for the Arts.
  • Barbary Coast, Dartmouth’s student jazz ensemble, will perform its 40th Winter Carnival concert in Spaulding; joined this year by Gregorio Uribe, a composer, arranger, singer, and accordionist from New York.
  • Dartmouth music faculty members and students will give a chamber music concert in Rollins Chapel on Sunday.

Sports fans can root for Big Green in three arenas.

  • Men’s hockey faces Union on Friday and Rensselaer on Saturday.
  • Men’s basketball meets Yale Friday and Brown Saturday.
  • Men’s and women’s squash takes on Yale Friday.

Movie buffs have lots to watch, too, including the 2016 Oscar-nominated shorts and a Seuss cartoon marathon. A full-length Dr. Seuss feature will be screened Friday and Saturday with late night breakfasts of the author’s concoction, green eggs and ham. Food and hot drinks will be served in several other spots throughout the weekend.

By then, meteorologists say, raising many hopes, carnival-goers will want steaming hot cocoa as they bundle up for winter’s return.

Charlotte E. Albright