Mary Baldwin Spirit Shines in Seasonal Celebrations

December 4, 2008

Update: The Mary Baldwin University community collected $2,475 and 351 pounds of non-perishable goods to deliver for the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank. Steve Grande, director of civic engagement, said this about delivering the donations: “As I was unloading your contributions from my little car this morning a big pick-up truck from a food pantry was getting loaded with a full bed of goods. The need will continue to grow after the holidays, so keep the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank and local food pantries in your thoughts in 2009.”

Mary Baldwin’s annual holiday party for the campus community and its friends in Staunton and beyond has been a highlight of the season for many years. Mindful of this year’s global economic concerns, Dr. Pamela Fox will not host the party and will instead lead a food drive for Blue Ridge Area Food Bank.Mary Baldwin and community members are encouraged to donate food in lieu of a holiday party at Mary BaldwinAs a recent editorial inThe News Leader(see below) pointed out, the need has never been greater and the local Food Bank is helping feed 65,000 to 77,000 people in our area every month. Members of the Mary Baldwin community and citizens in the surrounding area may drop off non-perishable food items and financial contributions at the college’s Spencer Center until December 15. On Monday, December 15, from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m., frozen foods may also be dropped off at the center.

“Mr. Layman and I always look forward to our holiday celebration as a time of joy and coming together as college and community. However, during this holiday season marked by economic uncertainty, I felt it was vital that we show our commitment to our community in a very tangible way. That is why we decided to forgo our holiday party and mount a food drive to benefit the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank, and therefore, those within our community most in need. Mary Baldwin University is committed to civic responsibility and support of our neighbors,” said Fox.

December 5: Las Posadas
Celebrate Las Posadas, a traditional Mexican holiday celebration, with Mary Baldwin University students, faculty, staff, and friends beginning at the PEG Center at 6 p.m. Las Posadas — which roughly translates to “shelter” — is a re-enactment of the Christmas story of Mary and Joseph’s search for a place for the birth of Jesus. Mary Baldwin’s adaptation involves following a path to several locations on campus, each featuring a different cultural holiday celebration, such as Chanukah and Christmas in the Caribbean. The public is encouraged to attend.

“The campus is diverse, and it is important for people from all backgrounds to work together on an event and understand the cultures of people they learn and live with during their college experience and beyond. Through cultural traditions we can glimpse the lives and histories of our sisters that we may not see on a daily basis,” said Maize Jacobs-Brichford ’06, about Las Posadas.

December 7: Christmas Cheer
Christmas Cheer is Mary Baldwin University’s pinnacle holiday celebration. The free event will begin at 4 p.m. in the stately First Presbyterian Church just across Frederick Street from the college’s Administration Building. Christmas Cheer features Mary Baldwin University’s Concert Choir, Madrigal Singers, Baldwin Charm, Anointed Voices of Praise, and the Greater Things Dance Ministry.

December 9-12: Senior Project Exhibitions in Studio Art
At the end of each semester Mary Baldwin takes time to celebrate the hard work and creativity of senior studio art students with professional-style exhibitions. This semester features Christina Cope’s fusion of graphic design and painting, Deidre Hiner’s original work entitled “Beyond Cooking,” watercolor paintings of goddesses by Shannen Luchs, and Amy Polowichak’s photographs that explore the bond between the artist and her grandfather. Congratulate these seniors in person at their opening reception in Hunt Gallery 4:30–6 p.m. December 9.