Fall break forecast

Students participate in Reagan Run and OEL trip

Sasha Weilbaker, Senior Writer

While many students choose to go home, visit friends, or stay on campus over fall break, other students take advantage of the extended weekend to participate in annual events organized by on-campus groups. This year, many students will participate in the Reagan Run, hosted by the Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity, and a trip to Shenandoah National Park, led by the University’s Outdoor Education and Leadership program.

The Ronald Reagan Run is an annual Tau Kappa Epsilon philanthropy event that began in 2004 and benefits the Alzheimer’s Association. The event came to fruition in order to support the fraternity’s chef, George Kitchens, after he was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Additionally, it is named in honor of former U.S. President Ronald Reagan, who suffered from Alzheimer’s and was a member of the Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity at Eureka College in Illinois.

The run is an approximately 180-mile relay race from the Tau Kappa Epsilon chapter house on campus to the White House in Washington D.C. Every fraternity brother runs a different leg of the race. Ian Vogel ’19, a Reagan Run Co-Chair along with Eddie Piotroski ’18, said that “the event really begins for all the brothers as soon as we arrive on campus for the semester, when we begin fundraising to reach our goal.”

“Last year we raised $45,000, and in the past twelve years we have raised over $300,000,” Vogel said. “This year we have challenged ourselves to raise $65,000 and we are on our way!”

The event officially begins on Oct. 6., and on the afternoon of Oct 8. the Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity brothers will arrive at the White House to present a check with the total from this year’s fundraiser to representatives from the Alzheimer’s Association.

The Reagan Run is not the only fall break event that is grounded in both exercise and the outdoors. Every October, the University’s Outdoor Education and Leadership program hosts a camping trip led by BuckWild leaders. Previous trip locations include Ohiopyle State Park in southwestern Pennsylvania and Assateague Island off the coast of Maryland. This year’s trip will be to Shenandoah National Park, which extends along the Blue Ridge Mountains in northern Virginia.

The students going to Shenandoah will be rock climbing, hiking Old Rag, the tallest mountain in the park, and basecamping at night. Aleksandar Antonov ’18, Kenzie Burns ’20, Ziwei Chen ’19, and Zach Sisson ’18 will be leading the trip.

“We’re very excited to be headed out to Shenandoah for a few days of hiking and climbing! I’m particularly looking forward to hiking Old Rag,” Burns said.

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