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February 5, 1912

“The annual ice carnival…was held on Vassar Lake to-night and more than 500 girls took part, all attired in white robes with silver scarfs. Along the shores of the lake great bonfires were built, while over the lake hung scores of Japanese lanterns and colored electric lights. Musicians surrounded by bonfires to keep them warm played as the girls skated.” The New York Times

“From far off, bonfires lighted up the trees around the lake and the crowded paths, and the twinkling lights of the Japanese lanterns shone a welcome ot the mob of girls, hurrying along the paths from the chapel, skates clicking…. After much waiting on the part of the on-lookers, and preliminary skating, the long-anticipated whistle called the participants of the Grand March to the farther end of the lake. The fires, fed with demolished boxes, burned brightly, casting shadows on the ice and a red glow on the trees above; a few late skaters darted across the ice; the band struck up the “Barcarolle” from “Contes d’Hoffman’ and from far away, down the lake, between the gleaming lights, came two lines, curving, endless, of white gliding figures. The scarfs, which, held by the skaters bound the long lines together, glittered in the light, not the silver and gold of the leaders, not the yellow, green, and red of the classes, and skates, striking the ice in even succession, sparkled, as the lines parted, came down in fours, met, parted again, formed now one sinuous, moving circle, now a large wheel with white, human spokes. After this figure, the lines broke, scattering skaters over the lake and the Grand March ended. Then followed more skating, dark coats mingling with the white sweaters…more music, until, with the rising of the moon and the anticipation of the ten o’clock bell, the skaters hurried up the path from the lake.”

The Vassar Miscellany

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