Fire and Ice: Celebrating the warmth of community with wintry and fiery festivities

Fire and Ice: Celebrating the warmth of community with wintry and fiery festivities

"Who sets off fireworks in the winter?"

We do! On the evening of Saturday, Jan. 30, Western Reserve Academy was brimming with activity for our first annual Fire and Ice event. Held on College Street and the front fields, and on the heels of a special "Chill Out" Day when Friday classes were canceled, Fire and Ice was a joyous activity for all the senses.

WRA's campus food truck — The Lux Truck — served ice cream, cookies and fiery hot cocoa, keeping everyone warm and well fed as they hopped from activity to activity. The night heated up quickly with fire performers dancing and juggling outside Metcalf Center, a thrilling and eye-catching display. On College Street, there was a "fire and ice" tunnel that led to a DJ and dance party on Ellsworth patio.

A street hockey game picked up on a closed off College Street, while others meandered to destinations such as Hobart House for s'mores around the fire pit. The WRA dance students held an impromptu flash mob and others headed to the WRA-themed ice sculpture for photo opps!

The evening crescendoed in a breathtaking fireworks display above the front fields.

Why put such an event together just a few weeks after the holidays and with one week until Mid-winter break? In the words of Head of School Suzanne Walker Buck, "Why not?"

"This is a celebration of weathering winter in Northeast Ohio during a pandemic," said Buck. "It's not always easy, but we are finding and creating joy wherever we can!"

The event lasted from 7 p.m. until check in, and a post party was held in the Green Key where students could watch "Blades of Glory" — no, not "Frozen" (but with Saturday's temperature in Hudson, Ohio rising only to 25 degrees outside, that would have been equally apt).

Thanks to the vision of our bright and bold leader, the Student Life Office, and all the faculty and staff who got Reserve fired up so the community could chill out. In the words of a neighbor to campus (neighbors were notified to keep their eyes on the skies on Saturday), "We hope this becomes an annual tradition!"