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Senior Abby Liebing plays vol­leyball at SAB’s 2018 Kickoff Cookout. Courtesy | Facebook

Stu­dents are back on campus, and to kick things off, Student Activ­ities Board (SAB) is hosting its  annual Kickoff Cookout, but with a twist. 

To bring a fresh feel to this classic event, SAB is hosting the cookoff — now called “Baw Beese BBQ” — at Baw Beese lake, instead of Hayden Park. 

The goal, junior and SAB small event team leader Claire Lupini said, is to bring new stu­dents to the beloved area earlier in their Hillsdale expe­rience. 

The event will be hosted at Owens Memorial Park at Baw Beese at 6 p.m. on Friday, August 30. 

Lupini said stu­dents are at Hayden Park a lot in the first few weeks of school, since many student groups host their initial events there. Addi­tionally, she said, freshman often don’t know about Baw Beese, so this allows them to start expe­ri­encing more of Hillsdale right away. 

Being at the lake also means stu­dents will get to dip their toes into sports other than vol­leyball: SAB will be bringing paddle boards and kayaking equipment.

“SAB is bringing pad­dle­boards, so we’re def­i­nitely changing the pace of the event,” Lupini said. “It’s more of a relaxed, vacation vibe now.”

Part of this vacation vibe includes dec­o­rating with tiki torches, and stu­dents are encouraged to wear their favorite Hawaaiian shirts. 

Despite adding new events, SAB is still keeping all the favorite activ­ities. Lupini said they knew how important vol­leyball was to the integrity of the annual cookout, so they bought a net and vol­leyball to ensure the tra­dition can live on at the new location. 

The cookout is always a good place for stu­dents to reunite with friends, Lupini said, espe­cially since Welcome Party is very lively and hectic. The bar­beque is inten­tionally more relaxed, pro­viding a place for people to reconnect with those they haven’t seen since the pre­vious school year. 

Junior Taryn Murphy has attended the kickoff cookout the last two years and said she is excited to see it change loca­tions. She never visited Baw Beese until her sophomore year, so she said she appre­ciates that SAB is trying to bring freshman out so soon in their time at Hillsdale. 

“It’s such a beau­tiful place to hammock or play vol­leyball,” Murphy said. “And I’m looking forward to spending time with friends in a new setting with new activ­ities.”

To com­pensate for the farther dis­tance, there will be a van at Lane Hall and Baw Beese every half hour from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. to transport stu­dents to and from the cookout.