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Schedule of Events | Register | Where to Stay | Directions to Campus | Campus Map (PDF)

Contact: familyweekend@bennington.edu

September 25–27, 2015

We hope you will join us at this year's Family Weekend. One of Bennington's great resources is its tight-knit, yet seemingly endlessly expansive community. For an institution its size, Bennington College has had a disproportionate impact on the world's cultural and intellectual stage. As parents and grandparents and siblings and friends of Bennington students, you are now part of this remarkable legacy and contribute to the College's vibrant network.

Over Family Weekend we invite you to immerse yourself in this community—sitting in on faculty workshops and discussions, hearing from recent alumni about their work in the world, and talking with Bennington's president about our vision for the future. Open houses, campus tours, cultural events, and our Family Weekend soccer match round out the weekend. Most importantly, you will have a chance to see life at the College through your Bennington student's eyes.

Hotels tend to fill up quickly during Vermont’s beautiful foliage season, so we recommend making your reservations early. For information about local lodging, check the region's chamber of commerce websites.

Registration and Meals

  • Registration fee: The per-person registration fee covers all programs and performances. The fee for parents and guests ages 19+ is $35 (prepaid) or $45 (on site); guests ages under 19 and Bennington students are free. Register here.
  • Harvest Dinner | Friday, September 25, 5:30–7:30 pm: Families can attend our Harvest Dinner for $17 per person for ages 7+ (children under 7 are free and Bennington students use their meal plan)—use the weekend registration form (above) to prepay and indicate how many dinner tickets you will be purchasing or pay by cash or credit card at the door.
  • BBQ Lunch | Saturday, September 26, noon–1:45 pm: Families can attend our BBQ Lunch for $13 per person (Bennington students use their meal plan)—use the weekend registration form (above) to prepay and indicate how many lunch tickets you will be purchasing or pay by cash or credit card at the door.
  • Other meals: Families are welcome to take advantage of meals in the Commons Dining Hall and Student Center throughout Family Weekend at their own expense. Payment (cash or credit card) for meals other than the Harvest Dinner and BBQ Lunch will be made upon arriving at either the Commons Dining Hall or Student Center and prices vary depending on mealtime (Commons Dining Hall) or what is ordered (Student Center).
  • Check-ins | Friday, September 25, 11:00 am–8:00 pm—pick up your welcome package and prepaid meal tickets; Saturday, September 26, 7:50 am–3:00 pm—if you haven't already, pick up your welcome packet and prepaid meal tickets.

Schedule of Events

Times and locations subject to change—a printed schedule will be provided at registration check-in.

Friday, September 25

11:00 am–8:00 pm
Registration

 

1:00–4:00 pm
Thematic campus tours will leave hourly from Admissions | Cricket Hill

 

2:30–3:30 pm
Artists' books and graphic novels | Crossett Library

Artists’ books are book objects that have been conceived as works of arts. Dean of the Library Oceana Wilson will share interesting examples of artists' books from the library's special collections, which will be available for hands-on viewing. Graphic novels are a type of text combining words and images typically telling a sequential story. Library Acquisitions Coordinator Wade Simpson, an MFA graduate of the Center for Cartoon Studies, will share graphic novels from the library's collection, including his own series, and demonstrate some unconventional binding techniques.

4:00–6:00 pm
Open drawing class | Location: TBA

 

5:00–6:30 pm
Bennington Community Dinner | Commons Dining Hall, Purple Room

The Bennington International Community and their friends and family are invited to come together to socialize and solidify the fact that Bennington is “home,” and friends, colleagues, and fellow students can become “family!” If your family was not able to make it for Family Weekend, please join us.

5:30–7:30 pm
Harvest Dinner | Commons Dining Hall

The Harvest Dinner will feature “Farm to Table” dining. The dining staff work with our own student-run Purple Carrot Farm and other local farms to serve you a taste of the memorable Vermont fall harvest season! If you prepay for tickets using the registration form, your tickets will be in your welcome packet when you arrive on campus; if you do not prepay, but have decided to join us, we are delighted to have you—please have cash or credit available at the door. (Prices are listed above.)

5:30–7:30 pm
Opening reception | People/Place: American Social Landscape Photography, 1950–1980

Location: Bennington Museum, 75 Main Street, Bennington

8:30–10:00 pm
An evening of music with “The Prescription” ft. faculty and alumni musicians

Join Bennington faculty members Kerry Ryer-Parke ’90, Bruce Williamson, and Michael Wimberly for an evening of dance-heavy funk, soul, and Motown classics set to the backdrop of a campus-wide dance party!

8:45–10:00 pm
Stargazing | Stickney Observatory

Join physics and astronomy students for an evening guide to the stars while sipping hot chocolate. Meet in front of Commons at 8:45PM and walk down to the Stickney Observatory. This event is weather-dependent.

Saturday, September 27

7:50 am–3:00 pm
Registration

Please check in at the registration table for your welcome packet and a refreshment. If you have already checked in, stop by for a continental breakfast including coffee, tea, and Bennington homemade granola.

8:00–9:30 am
Vinyasa flow yoga led by Tracey Forest of Spirit Hollow | Location: TBA

Wake up your body and soul with an all-level flow yoga class. Stretch your body and center your mind for the day's activities through focused breath, deep body awareness, and joyful, flowing movement. This class will make you feel great as you have fun. All are welcome; no yoga experience necessary. Please bring a mat and comfy clothes (no jeans).

10:30–11:45 am
Faculty Sessions | Locations: TBA

A taste of academic life on campus! Current Bennington faculty members will lead sessions focused on their current work. The schedule of sessions, with descriptions and locations, will be available in the welcome packet when you arrive on campus.

Noon–1:45 pm | Commons Lawn (rain location: Commons Dining Hall and Down Commons)
BBQ Lunch
Soccer game
Clubs and Organizations meet-and-greet

Join us on Commons Lawn for an exhibition match. Bennington’s own Pioneers soccer team will face off against SIT of Brattleboro, VT. A BBQ lunch will be available for purchase on site, and a small cross section of Bennington’s many student-led Clubs and Organizations will be on hand to answer your questions. Please bring your BBQ lunch ticket, cash, or credit to pay on site.

2:00–3:15 pm
Life after Bennington and FWT experiences panel

Meet recent alumni who will share the ways in which their Field Work Term experiences shaped their life post-Bennington and discuss how they have balanced pursuing their passions while building a career. Current students will join the conversation to share their FWT experiences.

3:30–4:45 pm
Faculty sessions

A taste of academic life on campus! Current Bennington faculty members will lead sessions focused on their current work. The schedule of sessions, with descriptions and locations, will be available in the welcome packet when you arrive on campus.

5:00–6:30 pm
Dinner on your own | North Bennington/Downtown Bennington

Look to your Bennington Downtown Guide located in your Family Weekend packet. Please enjoy the many restaurants in North Bennington, Bennington, and the surrounding Southern Vermont area. Local chamber of commerce websites.

8:30–10:00 pm
Student Works | Martha Hill Dance Theater and Newman Court, VAPA

An evening of original music, dance, theatre, and spoken word as written, choreographed, teched, and performed by current students. Visual artwork and a variety of science posters will also be displayed in Newman Court, VAPA.

8:45–10:00 pm
Stargazing | Stickney Observatory

Join physics and astronomy students for an evening guide to the stars while sipping hot chocolate. Meet in front of Commons at 8:45PM and walk down to the Stickney Observatory. This event is weather-dependent.

Sunday, September 28

10:00–11:30 am
A conversation with President Mariko Silver and ​exploring parent engagement at Bennington College | Student Center

 

Noon–2:00 pm
Send-off lunch | Student Center

Fill the bowls! Select a handcrafted bowl, made and decorated last year at Family Weekend by students and families. Then fill your bowl with a harvest soup made from ingredients donated by the student-run Purple Carrot Farm and the Bennington Dining Hall. All proceeds will go to the Food and Fuel Fund, a community organization. See students at work! Current ceramic students will be demonstrating hand wheel throwing. Your $15 donation provides you with a handmade bowl and all the soup you care to eat!

1:30 pm
Ball drop | Crossett Library

Which of us hasn’t, as a child, longed for a quarter from their parents to buy a super bouncy ball from a vending machine? Come enjoy the experience of not one, not one hundred, but five hundred super bouncy balls raining down from above, while you stand protected under clear glass watching them bounce. Featuring an installation by maker extraordinaire John Umphlett, interdisciplinary support specialist.

2:00–4:00 pm
Ceramic-bowl making workshop | VAPA

No experience necessary! Join ceramics faculty member Aysha Peltz in a hands-on workshop where you’ll craft ceramic bowls to be used in next year’s “Fill the Bowls” fundraiser.