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Two girls wearing Dartmouth green colors smiling in front of Harvard football stadium.

Traditions at Dartmouth are endless and they span through several circles at Dartmouth! For instance, the school sponsors traditions like Homecoming when first-year students walk around the bonfire in the Green. During the winter, students can then participate in the Polar Plunge at Occom Pond! Moreover, different social groups like Greek houses and acapella groups have their own traditions. Therefore, it is to no one's surprise that traditions also occur in sports and Dartmouth students are encouraged to partake despite not being athletes. It can almost be argued that "traditions" is Dartmouth's favorite word and for good reason.

One of our fall traditions is to attend the Dartmouth vs Harvard football game on Harvard's campus and celebrate the win or loss. Because of Boston's proximity, several students travel to Harvard's campus to cheer on the football team. This year, I traveled with my sorority, who shared a school bus with another fraternity on campus. Other houses also shared school buses as a way to transport students. Other friends were able to attend by signing up with their Housing Communities, which offered a free roundtrip in fancier traveling buses (for free!). Lastly, groups of friends or individuals drove their own cars to Boston with greater flexibility to explore. It is also not solely a tradition students carry out. There are several alumni and faculty that showcase their own school spirit. It is safe to say this tradition is wildly popular!

Upon arriving, we could clearly see the divide between Harvard's crimson red and Dartmouth's green. The game's halfway show had performances from both schools' marching bands and jokes being thrown at each other. It was incredibly entertaining to participate in some healthy rivalry. It was also my first time visiting Harvard, so it was also a lot of fun to step outside of campus even if I didn't understand much about the football game. 

Another tradition occurs in the Dartmouth vs Princeton hockey game. Like the Harvard game, I don't really know the reason or history behind it but I sure do love participating! I had never been to a hockey game before, so it was a pleasant surprise to see how much I enjoyed watching the game. The night was incredibly cold, so the minute I entered the Thompson Arena I was amazed by the large number of students attending the game. There was green throughout the arena and several families and community members. Fortunately, the game was free for current students which was another great incentive! 

The tradition is to throw a tennis ball onto the rink after Dartmouth scores their first goal. My friends and I were a couple of minutes late and had missed the first goal scored by Dartmouth so we weren't able to participate. However, a lot of others also arrived late to the game so when Dartmouth scored the second goal several students (myself included…) threw a tennis ball at the rink. 

Group of four people sitting down in a hockey arena and wearing green
Friends and I at the Dartmouth vs Princeton hockey game!

These traditions are incredibly silly and the reasoning behind them has sort of gotten lost along the way. However, they are so fun to participate in because they are like small inside jokes the Dartmouth community can count on. I can't wait to see what other traditions we participate in during the winter! 

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