Falling rain no match for Fall Family Festival

Oct 13, 2018

University of Massachusetts Dartmouth students enjoyed family and food at the school’s Fall Family Fest on October 13.

The festival, now in its eighth year, had to be moved inside to escape the rain, but the 2,500 attending family members’ spirits weren’t dampened.

“It’s just a time for parents to come to campus and hang out with their kids,” said Cynthia Cummings, the Dean of Students.

New to the festival this year were food trucks serving waffles, barbecue fried chicken, and dumplings. UMass Dartmouth Dining Services staff dishing up flatbread pizzas, which have become a mainstay at the event, along with chili, clam chowder, and chicken pot pie.

“It’s nice for the students,” said Jane Tierney, Executive Chef of Catering. “Many of them bring their family.”

Although dining services had initially planned to grill the pizzas outside, they were just as delicious cooked in the pizza oven. Two kinds of pizza were on offer: Tomato, mozzarella, and basil; and an autumnal pie featuring squash, goat cheese, and arugula.

“I think the kids eat well here,” Tierney said.

The event also featured music by the Becky Chace Band and many student performances by theater, a capella, and dance groups.

Sophomore Victoria Desilts performed with the UMass Dance team in the morning before grabbing a barbecue lunch with her family in the afternoon. She and her parents, Nikki and Ed Desilts of Douglas, MA, especially enjoyed the performance by the Theater Company.

“Let’s order sunshine for next year,” Ed Desilts joked.

Kamori Porter-Jacques, also a sophomore, had a busy morning with the equestrian team. She and her family were hanging out in the craft room while Riley Wicker, the youngest member of the family, colored in a turkey.

Porter-Jacques is a new student to UMass who began her undergraduate career at Mount Ida. Her family said this was their first real event on campus. They said that, besides getting a little lost, they were having fun.