Sara Pinette Contributing Writer
All forty-five members of Bust-A-Move Beavers came together for three shows during Thanksgiving week to give students, friends and families a performance that left the audience electrified and roaring with applause.
The shows included different styles of music and dance including lyrical, tap, contemporary, jazz, clog, hip-hop, and even some ballet. The show kicked off with all black attire and a high tempo beat as the entire club took part in the number titled “Soul Bossa Nova” choreographed by Alyssa Leonard, Carson Hope, and Jamie St. Pierre – all UMF students.
During the first half of the show, the club performed large group numbers such as “Jailhouse Rock” and “Supermarket Flowers”, which showcased the clubs synchronicity and fluidity as a team.
Among the group dances, the show featured 27 others pieces choreographed by 19 different members of the club and for many, that is the most exciting part of putting on a show like this. Heather Towle, a sophomore and psychology major, performed with BAM for the first time during show week.
“It felt really great to perform with my really close friends and I’ve been dancing pretty much my whole life, but I’ve never actually performed my own choreography.”
The President of the club, Morgan Laferriere, then chimed in and said, “her choreography is so good.”
Towle choreographed the dance “The Way You Make Me Feel” which was a jazz piece that featured seven dancers who dazzled in blue sparkly tops as they sassily strutted across the stage.
Laferriere is a rehabilitation major who has been a part of the BAM club since her first freshman semester at UMF. Laferriere choreographed two dances, her favorite being “Bohemian Rhapsody”.
“No one has ever done a 5-minute production number in BAM – ever – so I thought it was really cool,” Laferriere said. BAM showed a true passion for performing by dancing to the classic and many other time-honored pieces such as “You Can’t Stop the Beat” and “Footloose” after the intermission.
Preparing for this show was no easy task, according to the members of the club. Countless hours of choreography, rehearsal, costume designing and forging.
“I think there’s just so much to be done,” said Laferriere. “ I feel like I have finally everything done and then I remember ‘oh wait I have that other thing [to do]’, but it all came together in the end.”
It did, in fact, come together at the end as the whole club left the stage after taking their final bows and gave some of the seniors a spotlight to perform one final time. Seniors Rachael Chavarie, Abby Waceken, and Monicah Paquette were able to shine in their own unique and individual way, with tiaras sparkling on their heads.
“Dancing the last senior piece felt amazing, emotional, and bittersweet,” said Chavarie, a senior Elementary Education major, who will be student teaching in the spring. “I’ve been dancing since first grade so knowing it may be my last time performing on stage made it really personal for me. It’s hard to believe this chapter of my life may be ending, but I’m excited to see what’s next in my life.”
BAM constantly works towards being an inclusive club to all UMF students. “We’re really a big family. Whether they’ve been dancing their whole life or this is their first time doing dance,” said Hope. “They can join and participate in groups to try different styles of dance.”
According to BAM’s showcase pamphlet, any students who are interested can check out their table at the club fair next spring, or talk to any current members.
By Sara Pinette Contributing Writer
The Aspiring Educators of Maine Club give hands-on experience and professional connections to pre-service teachers at UMF.
The club welcomes early childhood, elementary, secondary and special education majors to attend their weekly meetings and occasional events that give students inspiration and a chance to learn more about their profession.
“We’re really big on the idea of giving perspective and inspiring teachers,” says President of the club Bryan Eldridge. “Giving hands-on experience to understand what the profession might look like and feel like through different conferences, activities on campus, and tangible advice in our meetings.”
An event that was popular last year, according to Vice President Carson Hope is “Tales from the Classroom”. It was such a success that the club decided to host the event again this year.
“Tales from the Classroom” will take place on November 1st and have a panel of new and experienced teachers talking about the realistic and sometimes amusing aspects of being an educator. “[It’s purpose] is to give advice to pre-service teachers,” Hope said.
The club also hopes to get more involved with the town of Farmington, instead of just the campus. They are partnered with local businesses and schools to do food drives a few times a year.
They already have plans set in motion to start a mentoring program with the Mt. Blue school district, where club members would tutor middle and high schoolers. Another idea they plan to initiate is a “Parent Night Out”. Hope describes the idea as “kids from the community would come and we would provide free childcare for the night.”
The Aspiring Educators Club is also involved in professional development opportunities outside of the local community. Anyone who is willing to sign up for a student Maine Education Associate (MEA) membership, which costs $28, will be able to go to a fall and spring conference which the majority of the association attends. “Typically we have about 20 and 30 UMF students who go,” said Hope.
These conferences offer many sessions, put on by various educators, about professional development and how to be a better teacher. There will be educators from all over the state gathering at the Fall Conference on October 19-20th to make connections and learn about new developments in the profession. Since the MEA is a full supporter of the Aspiring Educators Club, most of their members will be attending.
On October 18th, the club is hosting the President of the Maine Education Association, Lois Kilby-Chesley at their weekly meeting. She is coming to meet with the group to talk to about the profession and gain insight into how the UMF Aspiring Educators club operates.
Anyone interested in joining the club or just attending a meeting is more than welcome. “It’s really open to anyone who wants to come,” said Eldridge. The club meets every Tuesday night at 8:30 in the Ed Center.
Students can contact the club through their Facebook page or contact the President at email@example.com if they have any questions about the club or the education profession in general.
By Sarah Pinette Contributing Writer
The Center for Student Involvement and the Ferro Alumni center invites all friends and family of UMF students to enjoy another weekend full of activities including the Carnival on the Green, a variety of crafts and sporting events the weekend of September 28th.
The festival kicks off on Friday night with an outside screening of Disney’s movie “Tangled” on the Mantor green. Journey Bubar, a sophomore at UMF and an employee at the Student Life office, attended last year’s Fall Fest. Bubar says that this was a popular event for students to attend with their friends because most parents won’t arrive until Saturday.
“The outdoor movie was really big with the students,” said Bubar. “Even if you didn’t like the movie, people still went for the social part of it.”
Saturday is packed full of events for friends and families starting at 9 a.m. Many activities will take place on the Mantor Green during Fall Fest. The first popular activity that students gravitate towards is the bunny petting zoo which will happen on the Green.
“[The petting zoo] brought a huge crowd, obviously,” said Bubar. Another returning event that gathered quite the crowd last year is the carnival put on by the campus CA’s. The carnival will also happen during the 9 a.m to 12 p.m. slot on the Green. Activities at last year’s CA Carnival included balloon animals, face painting and donut-eating contests.
In addition to outdoor activities, there are several events going on inside buildings all over campus. Activities in the Landing, which is inside the basement of the Student Center, will be sure to attract a large crowd from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. Some of these events include a photo booth and airbrush tattoos.
Another event that is taking place in the Olson Student Center could be the most attended activity for the second year in a row. This is the “Stuff It Program,” that Fall Fest puts on every year. At this event, participants make their own stuffed animal. Bubar recalls this program as the most attended event. “So many people went that they actually ran out of beavers,” said Bubar. “They had huge piles of them but still ran out really quickly because it was so popular.”
Saturday night ends with a concert by one of UMF’s acapella clubs, Clefnotes, at 7 p.m. The last activity starts an hour after the concert in the Landing. This event is the magic show put on by Todd Migliacci, an experienced and well-respected performer.
The Fall Festival weekend is welcome to all and has something for all interests. Many students
see this as an opportunity to see their loved ones for the first time since they left for college. It also can be a time to forget about the stress that college sometimes causes and hang out with old and new friends.
Another attendant of last year’s Fall Fest, Jess Freeborn, comments on her feelings of the weekend. “It really gets you in the fall spirit,” Freeborn said. “And it helps with feeling a bit homesick.”
“It was really worth it,” said Bubar. “And at the end of the weekend, I didn’t want it to end.”