By Ashley Clark, Contributing Writer
Jade Petrie reaching to pick some apples (Photo courtesy of Jared Smelter)
Wondering what fall activities there are to do around campus? Look no further, because students of the University of Maine at Farmington have some fun activities to get involved in!
With the University taking serious precautions to stop the spread of COVID-19, many activities and events the school used to hold seem to have been cancelled. These activities include the Halloween dance, trick or treating in the dorms, and the haunted hall walk; however, students around campus have still been getting in the Fall spirit and looking for other fun Fall activities to get involved in.
UMF Junior and Art History Major, Jack Olson, participated in an all time favorite and classic fall pastime, “My friends and I decided to still go apple-picking this year,” he said, “Since the orchard is outdoors, we were able to still feel safe and have fun.” Olson and his friends ventured to Boothby’s Orchard and Farm to getin the fall spirit.
UMF Junior and Elementary Education Major, Jade Petrie, also attended the apple-picking trip and had a ginormous bag of apples to bring home, “Since we picked so many apples, we decided to make an apple pie,” she said, “However, we picked so many apples that we had enough to make several pies.”
For students of drinking age, a new restaurant/bar opened during summer break while most campus residents were gone. Because of this, many still do not know of it or where it is. The Farmhouse Beer Garden is located at 926 Farmington Falls Rd, Rte 2, Farmington, ME. Their hours of operation are Tuesday-Sunday 12pm-8pm and Monday 4pm-8pm.
UMF senior and Elementary Education Major, Leanna Farr, has visited the Beer Garden several times, “The outdoorsy atmosphere with various beers on tap keeps me coming back,” she said, “There are also lawn games you can play with your friends, such as cornhole—and the pizza is delicious.” With plenty of beers on tap, it is the perfect place to order a flight of beer, relax, and hangout with friends in this nice fall weather. If you are under the age of 21, you can still visit The Farmhouse Beer Garden as they have alternative drinks to offer such as sodas and milkshakes.
A popular fall activity students participate in is decorating their dorm room or apartments for the upcoming holiday. Halloween is nearing and many people love to decorate for it.
UMF sophomore and Elementary Education Major, Marissa Goodwin, has already started decorating her apartment. Fall is her favorite season, “I decorate for the fall season first and then decorate for Halloween as it gets closer,” she said, “I have decorative pillows matching fall colors on my couch. As well as, pumpkins, leaves, and turkey decor scattered around the apartment.”
With the weather getting cooler and the leaves starting to fall, the campus has been humming with fall spirit. Hopefully these fall festive activity suggestions will help those wanting a way to share this spirit.
by Ashley Clark Contributing Writer
Near the end of summer break, UMF made the decision to allow student athletes to participate in their sports season; however, these seasons have been altered to align with the Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines.
The athletics department came to this tough decision after watching numerous videos and Zoom calls from the National College Athletic Association (NCAA), led by medical professionals.
The department is also keeping up to date with COVID-19 trends in Maine in order to protect incoming student athletes returning to school in the fall.
Julie Davis, Director of Athletics, worked with coaching and sports medicine staff on campus, in addition to attending meetings with athletic directors from within the sports conference. “You have challenges as a director anyway, but probably the hardest thing is dealing with uncertainty and ambiguity for a sustained period of time,” said Davis.
The athletic department was determined to develop a plan of action that would allow student athletes to participate in sports. They have also made it mandatory that all student athletes living on and off campus must participate in the early testing program provided by a COVID-19 testing company in the Fitness and Recreational Center (FRC).
Fall sports such as field hockey, soccer and cross country are not able to compete, but athletes are still able to attend practices.
The department has developed a month long process with differing levels of intensity for each week, with the intention for safe team practices.
The first week of practice involved routine temperature checks with no equipment use— conditioning exercises only. All practices must also consist of physical distancing at six feet, wearing a face mask and sanitizing when possible.
Jade Petrie, a junior and Early Childhood Education major, participates in both field hockey and lacrosse. Wearing her mask during her practices has been hard enough, even at the start of her fall sports season. “It’s really hard to wear because when you start to run, you breathe heavily and suck in the mask,” Petrie said. “It makes it almost impossible for you to catch your breath.”
Liz Ouellette, senior and Elementary Education major, is also a member of the field hockey team. Her last season has been impacted by the changes to the fall sports season. “There’s no team bonding, such as having dinners together, because there are too many people to be in a house. We can’t have bus rides, games, anything really,” said Ouellette.
The athletics department is working hard to assure that athletes are able to at least practice. Many are just grateful to even be able to participate with one another. “I think it is better to have something than nothing,” says Ouellette. “It’s my senior year and having practices with a team I’ve spent the past three years with is better than not being able to at all.”
Petrie praises all the department’s work and planning. “I’m thankful that they are letting us have an opportunity to pick up my field hockey and lacrosse stick, regardless of playing games,” says Petrie.
COVID-19 guidelines are changing continuously, which makes it difficult to predict how the winter and spring sports seasons will look for student athletes. While fall sports already have a plan in motion, winter and spring sports are still being discussed. Winter sports are scheduled to start practicing soon. The athletic department is “planning [these seasons] with optimism,” says Davis.
Jade Petrie Contributing Writer
UMF seniors have been hit hard by the decision to move all courses to online distance modalities for the remainder of the semester, in response to the spread of the Coronavirus. With campus closed and major spring semester activities and events cancelled, seniors are grieving over the loss of their final semester on campus and the sudden, unexpected departure from friends.
Three seniors, Keilly Lynch, Noah Nicholas and Suther Bickford, agreed to share their thoughts on the current situation and found many of their feelings to be similar. While they all seemed to be understanding of the situation, and knew that it was much larger than the University, “It is unfortunate and heart breaking, but at the end of the day I understand that health and safety always comes first,” Lynch said via email.
“I have been pretty upset about the situation overall. Having the senior year experience be cut short is very difficult,” Nicholas said through an interview over email. “[I’ve had to] say goodbye to close friends and relationships I’ve built at UMF, as well as staff members.”
Bickford shared similar sentiments via email, but noted the disappointment with learning news of the closure from alternative sources, before hearing from UMF administrators. “This situation has been rough. I was upset that I heard the news first from a news article on Facebook.”
“Originally, I thought it would mostly remain a major issue in places such as Italy and China,” said Nicholas. “I definitely did not think we would be in a National State of Emergency. I thought it would be similar to when the Swine flu was spreading several years ago.”
With sports seasons cancelled and Lynch being the one and only senior captain on the women’s lacrosse team, she looked at this situation with two different perspectives. “My first reaction was frustration. I was happy to hear the news that my season was cancelled from my coach, as opposed to another news source. However, it was definitely abrupt and unexpected”
All sports teams were fortunate enough to hear the news directly from their coach, directly following a meeting all coaches attended to get the new information regarding their season and how it will not be finished. “I began reflecting on how fortunate I was to have the opportunity to play lacrosse at the collegiate level. Many athletes finish their sports careers at the end of high school, so I was extremely lucky to have an extra three full seasons of lacrosse at UMF,” Lynch said. Even though Lynch’s season was cut short she was thankful for the time she had and the friendships she made. This sentiment was shared amongst the others as well.
Jade Petrie Contributing Writer
The UMF women’s basketball team has been off to a great start in the NAC conference with a record of 7 wins and 2 losses.
The team is led by senior captain Sara Lamb as well as head coach Jamie Beaudoin and assistant coaches Noah Carol and Dylan Eustis.
Women’s basketball recently played one of their hardest games of the season against the Thomas College Terriers. The beavers put up a fight, keeping the win within reach the whole game with a final score of 58-53.
Junior McKenna Brodeur finished the game with a high of 12 rebounds and both Brodeur and Molly Folsum scored eight points. Sophomore Paige Brown scored the second most points, coming in with ten points and going 4-5 from the floor. Junior Alex Bessey was the leading scorer for the Beavers with 17 points.
Bessey said, “It was a hard fight and when we were down I knew we had to pick up our intensity and we gave it our all.” Bessey is a rookie to the Beavers this year but is not a stranger to the sport of basketball. She transferred from Central Maine Community College (CMCC), played on their basketball team and won a national championship her final year there. “It was hard at first to transition to a new type of play but the team helped me so much in adjusting and making sure I didn’t miss a beat.”
Senior Captain Sara Lamb: Lamb taking the ball into the paint for a shot. (Photo courtesy of Jeff Lamb Photography)
Beaudoin, a UMF alumni, has led the team to a successful conference season. Beaudoin has been a head coach here for the last twenty years. He went into the Thomas game with a set strategy that had to quickly be adapted when Thomas’s leading scorer was out for the game. He felt like he had made the right choice with the changes.
His look on the season has been positive, mainly focusing on effort and the beavers goal to have a home playoff game finishing in second or third place. Beaudoin sees his team this year as a well-rounded group of talent, “From top to bottom the team is more competitive, we as a team have an increased skill set where all players have high basketball IQ, being able to handle the ball, and being able to shoot the ball,” Beaudoin said.
The Beavers played most recently against State University New York (SUNY) Canton at Canton, NY.
Before the game, Beaudoin was concerned about the length of the trip wearing out her team and the new environment throwing them off. “We have five games to go,” Beaudoin said, “Playing in a gym we’ve never played in, and also playing against players we don’t know.”
SUNY vs UMF final score for their Friday game was 65 to 42 with the Beavers taking the win. The leading scorers of the game were Tia Day and Paige Brown both coming in with 14 points. Molly Folsom led the team with 8 rebounds.
Saturday at noon the Beavers faced off SUNY again for another conference game. The final score was 58 to 54 with the Beavers taking another win. The leading scorer of the game was McKenna Brodeur with 16 points and also lead the team in rebounds with 11.
The Beavers are now 9-2 in the NAC conference. Their next game is tonight against Husson University at 5:30pm in Farmington.