10 Things to do outside besides Frisbee Golf

Jamie Soukup

Spring is upon us: for the first time all year, the thermometer has jumped above 65, the sun is showing its face, and people are taking off their shoes and shirts to step into the fountain in front of Hunter.   As the temperatures rise, it’s time to take a break from writing that thesis to step outside and enjoy the fresh air. Here are some things to do outside besides the typical Frisbee-tossing on Ankeny:

1  –  Play with dogs at the Humane Society.  

The Walla Walla Humane Society is always looking for volunteers: people who just want to go and play with puppies and walk them around. If you love animals and volunteering, there is no better way to spend that time out in the sunshine than with them.

2  –  Look for ducks’ nests or ducklings.  

This reporter has found two nests already: one by “the Gates” artwork on the stream by Hunter, and one by the wooden bridge by BFC and Douglas. Mother ducks are incredibly protective of their nests, so don’t get too close, or they’ll charge. But if you stay a ways back, you can see their nests and eggs, and maybe see them hatch if you’re lucky! Some biology majors claim you can rent binoculars from the science building, and these are perfect for watching ducks and other birds (rumor has it two owls have moved into the tree by the Outhouse).

3  –  Run a  lemonade stand.  

It’s not just for kids anymore! Grab some friends, a folding table and a poster board, and go to town. Feel free to make your own substitutions, to make it more grown-up. For example, try serving Arnold Palmers instead of lemonade, or give watermelon lemonade a shot! Just remember you need a liquor license to serve alcohol, so put the hard stuff away…

4  –  Decorate Styx.  

This suggestion comes via a reader. He suggests grabbing some props: sunglasses, leis, grass skirts for example: and giving Styx a little fashion makeover. You can use this project in a fun way: dress him up like a friend, and give him a poster that celebrates that friend; or, choose a favorite fictional character (Harry Potter perhaps?) to disguise him.

5  –  Stargaze.  

This might seem like an obvious one, but if you haven’t done it, don’t miss your chance! We’re so far-removed from the city, that bright lights don’t impede our ability to see the celestial heavens. Even grabbing a blanket and heading to your front yard is great, but I highly recommend driving out to the wheat fields, climbing a hay bale, and spending an hour or two just gazing at the sky. Just remember that not all wheat fields are public, and don’t trespass.

6  –  Take a ride in a  Pedi Cab.  

Head around town in one of these person-powered taxis. These are a great way to make a special event: a birthday celebration, a date: extra special. If you want, arrange ahead of time with a friend who works for the company to find out when they will be pedaling. You can also go on historic Pedi Cab tours which would be a surprise to treat your parents to when they come to help you move!  

7  –  Sidewalk Chalk.  

There is a ton of sidewalk chalk on this campus already. It’s mostly used for advertising for student events, but there is no reason why you and a few friends can’t grab some and paint (well, chalk) the town! Remember not to draw on bricks or concrete, because these don’t wash off easily, and then a custodial staff will have to spend hours scrubbing.  

8  –  Create an art  installation.  

Now that we’re well into April, it will be any day now that the senior art majors will adorn campus with obscure and unexpected art installations. Some of these projects may make us squint and ask our friends, “Is that really art?”: as it turns out, yes, it is: they’re art majors, they know what they’re doing: but don’t let the magnitude of some projects deter you. Make Your public art inspiration   reality. And don’t miss your opportunity; when you leave Whitman, you’ll be surprised at the lack of acceptance for public art installations.  

9  –  Have a picnic in a tree.  

This is my favorite idea. I was going to suggest climbing trees, or having a picnic, but you’ve heard those before. On a sunny day, pack a Nalgene full of juice, a Tupperware container with your favorite snack, and hoist yourself and a friend into a tree to enjoy it. If climbing trees are challenging for you, I suggest use of an emergency rope ladder.

10  –  Quidditch.  

Junior Kali Stoehr last year organized all-campus open games of the Hogwarts sport on Ankeny. All you need to do is look up the rules online, gather some Harry Potter enthusiasts, and grab a broom to get started.

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