Farewell, fall; welcome, winter

With finals right around the corner, a night of fun could be just what students need to vet exam-induced exasperation. After that, sweeping them swiftly off their feet with a snowball to the face: here comes winter break!

The gap between terms comes as a gust of fresh, cold air; a release from the constraints of college life. But what else is there to do around town when UCC’s campus is closed?

For those not already in-the-know, finding things to do in the gaps between terms can be difficult. Even Roseburg regulars realize this: as Jazmin Ode, student and long-time-resident of Douglas County, says, there’s a definite correlation between being raised someplace and the ability to be aware of its offers and opportunities.

Suggestions from a UCC expert

Jazmin Ode, Douglas County resident and UCC student.
The Mainstream

“My grandma and aunt both worked at UCC for a long time,” Ode says. She mentions often hanging out in the office of her grandmother, Judy Ode, walking around campus and even participating in summer camps held at the college. “I know how to study and I’ve had more opportunities to understand how to maneuver in college; I know where certain things are on-campus.”

For instance, winter break is a great time to walk the winter wonderland of UCC’s with a dog or friend or take the Lee O. Hunt Arboretum trail, named after a former Douglas County youth who died. His parents purchased the original trail sign and the trail itself has since been renovated by the Forestry Club, among other college participants.

The UCC Visual & Performing Arts Calendar on the college website also lists the dates and times of scheduled winter concerts and performances.

Ode references familial connections as a modem of information transportation by which she learns about such goings-on. “[My family] usually communicates with me about upcoming events,” she says. Students without an inside connection to UCC events can check their student announcements, the college website’s front page or the website’s selection of calendars.

Ode, who lives in Winston, frequently drives by the Douglas County Fairgrounds to get into Roseburg; she says she learns about upcoming Fairgrounds events from their attention-attracting posting and signage.

So, what is there to do?

There are still more UCC events in store before the cold “snaps” (and winter “breaks”), a large portion of which are made for and by students.

One such event will be the UCC theater department’s performance of “The 39 Steps,” set to debut Dec. 8 at 7 p.m. at the Centerstage theater in the Whipple Fine Arts Building.

“The 39 Steps” actor Kat Grammon twirls the skirt of Mrs. Memory’s bedazzled dress.
Robin Bruns / The Mainstream

The show is a play — a Hitchcock-parodying comedy — in which a man, bored with his life, is swept off his feet by a woman all-too-soon-murdered and suddenly thrust into the throes of “a nationwide manhunt [climaxing] in a death-defying finale!” More information can be found on UCC’s Facebook page about the event.

UCC’s student newspaper The Mainstream has previously done an article on “The 39 Steps.” Now, the play has evolved into a finished, fully-produced product, which its cast describes as a labor of love, and demonstrates student actors’ dedication through their often-daily dress rehearsals.

At a recent rehearsal, theater director Bart McHenry could be seen performing an act of his own: the audience. After climbing onstage to introduce the play, McHenry disappeared into the scene of empty seats, draping himself over one with a good view of the actors under his tutelage.

Every so often, McHenry would raise his phone to mutter under his breath, dictating notes, which he would then use at intermission as constructive criticism toward the performances in each scene.

Any mistakes which occurred were quickly caught; McHenry called them out as they happened, which the cast would then resolve and correct before reorienting themselves in the show.

With the lights on (and an acapella track provided occasionally by the cast themselves during scene changes), UCC’s production of “The 39 Steps” is a living, breathing testament to the talent of its cast, director and lighting designer Anthony Gordon, a fellow student at UCC.

The play can be seen also on the following dates and times: Dec. 9 from 7 to 9 p.m.; Dec. 10 from 3 to 5 p.m. and again from 7 to 9 p.m.; and Dec. 11 from 3 to 5 p.m.

Students get free admission or 10 bucks apiece

After (and during) the play’s procession, there are a few other December performances. So far, one event offers free admission to UCC students: Hummin’ a Holiday Tune, put on by the Umpqua Singers, occurring Dec. 13 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Centerstage theater. The show will deliver “jazz standards, contemporary selections and holiday favorites.”

The events that do not waive student admission most commonly require a fee of $10. In December, these events are as follows:

Roseburg Concert Chorale, a “non-profit, [no]-audition community choir,” will perform at Centerstage in the Whipple Fine Arts Building and has multiple performance dates: Dec. 2 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. and Dec. 4 from3 to 4:30 p.m.

Portrait of Sound, a concert starring UCC’s concert band and big horn jazz musicians, will take place from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Dec. 6 at Jacoby Auditorium.

Leap of Faith Dance Center will present their ‘Tis the Season to be Dancing, an annual recital featuring all-age performers, on Dec. 3 at 5 p.m. at the Jacoby Auditorium.

Lynne Smith poses with her wreath.
Robin Bruns / The Mainstream

Wine ‘n’ twine your very own wreath

For $49 a person, paying participants could indulge themselves in a wreath-making class offered by Instructional Coordinating Specialist Lynne Smith; the price covers the cost of all materials and instruction given.

The class takes place Dec. 10 from 1 to 3 p.m. at UCC’s Wine Institute. Smith decided to start teaching the class after she learned how to make the wreaths herself one holiday season.

Wreath-makers over the age of 21 may also be treated to a tasting of the wine grown here at UCC.


Contact me at:
UCCMainstream@yahoo.com

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