New Paltz To REC It Out-doors

With finals and long nights in the library right around the corner, SUNY New Paltz’s Athletic and Wellness department is hoping to offer students an escape with the third-annual REC It Out on May 11.

The outdoor event will take place on the college’s universal study day before final examinations begin, and will feature multiple recreational and entertaining activities on the Parker Quad.

“The main thing is about pure fun,” Director of Wellness and Recreation Keith Kenney said. “There isn’t much to it, it’s not academic and it’s an opportunity to be with friends and have fun.”

In its third-year, Kenney said those involved with the planning process have learned from past experiences and taken them into account when planning this year’s events. One such safeguard was the implementation of a rain date after last year’s REC It Out was pushed into Elting Gym due to inclement weather.

“We wanted to make sure it’s outside,” Kenney said. “Last year it was a success, but being inside kind of put a damper on the whole thing.”

While Kenney said this year’s events mirror last year’s, many new activities have been added. Among the events being offered this year are an inflatable jousting ring, an obstacle course and bungee run. These will be coupled with free food and multiple outdoor activities and competitions. Kenney said prizes will also be given out throughout the day.

First-year undeclared student Sharyce Willand said she didn’t know what REC It Out was, being a first-year student. However, she said she thought the idea sounded enjoyable.

“It sounds like a lot of fun,” Willand said. “I’d go to it if I have the time.”

Former REC It Out events were developed by a committee of six students in 2009. Those involved were tasked with brainstorming an end-of-the year event for the Athletic and Wellness department to hold every year, Kenney said.

The first REC It Out was held on the turf field and was a huge success, Kenney said.

“People joked that they felt like a kid again,” Kenney said.

Kenney said this year’s event is co-sponsored and co-funded by Student Activities and praised the collaboration between the departments. While the Athletic and Wellness department will staff the event, the Office of Student Activities  and Union Services was able to help pay for some of the larger expenses such as the inflatable rides.

Kenney said he hopes this year’s turn out will benefit from it being outside and hopes students who are passing by will be compelled to join and have fun.

“It’s a time to spend a few hours outside and forget about finals and de-stress a bit,” Kenney said.