A tradition connecting students and the community for 20 years, Colby Cares Day promises some new features in 2016. On Saturday, April 30, in addition to the teams of students working at nonprofit and municipal sites around central Maine, Colby athletic teams will conduct sports clinics for area youngsters at Waterville’s Head of Falls park. In the afternoon a reception at the park is designed to bring together area residents and Colby students for music, performances, food, and fun.
Organized by the student-run Colby Volunteer Center, Colby Cares Day continues the tradition of students providing cleaning, raking, sorting, organizing, and other services at locations throughout the area to help with community spring cleaning chores. Adam Lavertu ’16 of Madawaska, Maine, CVC co-director with Laurel Whitney ’16, said he expected approximately 200 students to help at more than 20 locations from 9 a.m. to noon. Students were still signing up in the week before the event. Following morning work details Colby students who participate will receive vouchers for lunch at one of several downtown restaurants.
Colby’s men’s and women’s soccer teams and the field hockey team will all run separate clinics for area youth from 9 a.m. to noon at Head of Falls, and the Outing Club will offer activities for kids as well. Afterward, Colby students and youngsters, other Colby Cares Day volunteers, and area residents are invited to connect at a reception/performance/concert in the riverside park there. A local musician and student groups will take turns performing, with music and dance numbers planned. Local food favorites Grammy K’s and Downtown Smoothies will serve samples.
SGA President Michael Loginoff ’16 of San Mateo, Calif., said he was partnering with Waterville Creates!, Waterville Main Street, and the city manager’s, public works, and police departments to organize the afternoon gathering. “The reception is a great way to celebrate the relationship between Colby and Waterville, incorporating civic engagement as well as arts and culture,” he said. He stressed that, for students, civic engagement isn’t just a one-day commitment, “It’s engagement and participation over the whole year.”
Colby alumni continue the more recent tradition of far-flung Colby Cares Day volunteer efforts this year. On April 23 nine members of the Class of 2015 led by former CVC director Meghan Harwood ’15 cleaned up Heron Head Park in San Francisco (see photos), and Sameera Anwar ’10 was working to organize a later Colby Cares project in Boston.