The Recreation Center doesn’t plan to drop the ball for the new year


Sanket Katta

The Rec Center is working to hold in-person events in the future. Safety precautions will be taken.

RachelAnn Degnan, Staff Reporter

The sound of the ball dropping to end 2020 will not only be a sign of a new year but will also be a metaphor for new hope. 

Senior Spencer Dalzell has high hopes for this “fresh” new year.

“As a student, I feel like we have to take it one day at a time,” Dalzell said. “Since there is more [COVID-19] testing going on, I think there is still a chance we will get to go back on campus at least in some variety. I am honestly just trying to not stress out about it and just take it one day at a time.”

As an intramural manager, Dalzell plans on bringing in new activities while continuing well-received and highly praised events from fall quarter.

“We are still waiting for final approval, and since the whole on-campus thing is being reevaluated constantly, we can’t predict what will be approved,” Dalzell said. “Everything is going to come down to the wire.”

In Ellensburg, winter is known to bring lots of snow, and because it is harder to accommodate social distancing indoors, the Recreation Center has to be more creative with its activities. 

“We have a few tentative ideas already,” Dalzell said. “We hope to have a snowball dodgeball fight, but of course, we need snow. Other winter events like the indoor Iron Man and a healthy water drinking challenge are still planned to take place.”

Dalzell is proud of his team’s creativity and is excited to see what events will be approved.

“We try to throw everything down on a piece of paper and see what sticks,” Dalzell said. “It’s a real testament to the strength and creativity of our team.” 

Dalzell’s coworker Intramural Manager Emily McDonald’s favorite sport will always be soccer, but she is excited about the winter quarter’s multiple possibilities.

“We are hoping to be able to offer double and maybe even triple the number of events we offered this last quarter,” McDonald said. “Depending on what the government mandates, there may be a possibility of bringing back contact sports.”

Dalzell and McDonald’s boss, Intramural Sports & Special Events Coordinator Shana Kessler, has taught her team to think of next year as a growing year.

“I am optimistic that we can take what we learned from spring and fall 2020 and turn that into something bigger and better in 2021,” Kessler said. “Instead of looking at all the things that didn’t go well, we should focus on what can be changed.”

The Recreation Center spent fall quarter improving their COVID-19-safe and socially distant activities. 

“We have learned from this quarter that students are kind of tired of virtual events,” Kessler said. “So we are coming up with plans to offer safer in-person activities and trying to limit how many virtual events happen each week.”

The Recreation team is always trying to create interesting and fun events for the student body.

“There are so many different possibilities, and none of them are concrete yet, but we would love to collaborate more with students, departments and clubs across campus to come up with new ideas,” Kessler said.