Our parents may be hOUme but that doesn’t mean the parties will stop

Ohio University knows how to party so well parents don’t know if they should be mad or not. This weekend was filled with live music, dancing, and regrettable decisions for some.

  1. The Union sets the tone for this fun, music filled weekend.

Adam Remnant, Breakers, Smizmar

Friday, 23 September 2016 9:00 pm

@ The Union

Creator: The Union

 

Adam Remnant is a local folk artist on tour for his recently released EP, When I Was a Boy. He was the headline act for the show at The Union Bar & Grill. Breakers, and Smizmar shared the stage with Remnant Friday night. The show was an example of not only how good the music in Athens is, but also how there’s no typical “Athens band”.

2. Open Doors Casa Dance Party

The party is slayin' with DJ vampy kitty!!! @vampykitty @ouopendoors @casanuevaathens

A photo posted by Ohio University LGBT Center (@oulgbtcenter) on

Open Doors, an LGBT student group on campus hosted their first dance of the school year with a stoplight theme dance party. The dress code for the party was simple but interesting. Everyone was to wear stoplight colors but they each meant different things. If you wore green, you were single and ready to mingle for the night while red meant you were off the market or weren’t interested.

Saturday night was also DJ Vamptykitty’s first solo act.

3. Country Night Lights 

 

Hundreds of people gathered at The Venue of Athens this past weekend to enjoy two booze filled days of country music in their cowboy boots. Two days of up-and-coming musicians entertained this rowdy crowd. The bars weren’t going to pass up on an opportunity to offer a place to pregame before pregaming outside the venue.

4. Skeletonwitch returns to Athens

Athens, thank you for a killer, sold-out show last night. There is no better way to start a tour.

A photo posted by @skeletonwitch on

Skeletonwitch returns to Athens and play their show back at The Union Bar & Grill a year after it burned down. The Union was where former OU students began playing before gaining an international following in the metal scene. This show kicked off their five-week Curse of the Dead 2016 U.S. tour.

5. No matter what happened to you this weekend just be glad you didn’t end your weekend this way.

Everyone is told from day one to be very careful around the horse officers. After a night of drinking this man seems to have forgotten the sacred rule in Athens–always ask before petting a horse.

He took it a step further by actually mounting the horse when he saw there was no police around. Though no records have been found as of yet online his friends say he was arrested but is free and will have a trial on Monday.

 

You can be grateful you woke up this morning with just a simple headache.

The Post-Secondary

Getting Social via Media

People are talking about their time at GBD- Green Beer Day, that is. Check out #GBD for posts from Bobcats wearing green and drinking green.

Faculty and staff received an email about a big announcement today and some are using #OUAnnounce to speculate what it will be. Theories so far include President McDavis’ retirement and a slide down Jeff Hill.

@Pottermore revealed a part of ‘History of Magic in North America’ via Twitter.

 News-Worthy Topics

Students are back from spring break and welcoming “fest season” with open arms. Before the festivities officially kick off this weekend, students first celebrated Green Beer Day on Wednesday. Though St. Patrick’s Day is about a week away, students took to the bars on Court Street and consumed large amounts of green-colored beer in honor of the Irish holiday.

As the colored-alcohol activities came to an end, Athens welcomed Ohio University’s Board of Trustees to campus for its March meeting. The university’s main decision-making entity will discuss and likely approve a plan for the university’s infrastructure for the next decade, tuition increases for the Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine and future renovations for The Ridges.

OU officials are also in the midst of choosing a new Vice President for Student Affairs after Ryan Lombardi stepped down from the position and took a job at Cornell University in New York. There are currently two candidates vying for the position, which is temporarily being performed by Dean of Students Jenny Hall-Jones.

Let’s Talk Sports

The Ohio Women’s Basketball team will be attending The 2016 Mid-American Conference Tournament in Cleveland on Monday. The Bobcats will be playing 12 other teams in the MAC conference.

The Ohio Men’s Basketball team will also be attending The 2016 Mid-American Conference Tournament in Cleveland. After upsetting Miami last weekend, they will be playing tonight.

After 18 years in the NFL, Peyton Manning will be retiring from Pro Football. Peyton didn’t want his body to give out, but there is some speculation that he could be going into the business or broadcasting side of sports.

Current NBA MVP and Golden State Warriors Center Guard Stephen Curry is currently trying to help out other young athletes get into the NFL.

Lifestyle Fixes for any Bobcat

13 Versatile Ways to Get the Most Out of Your College Years

31 Money Saving Tricks for Students

11 Cheap Ways to Make Your College Apartment Look More Grown-up

25 Essential Dorm Room Cooking Hacks

101 Health and Wellness Tips for College Students

Breaking Down Higher Education

Graduate student teachers have a positive effect on undergraduates

A recent study has shown that graduate student instructors have a positive effect on the undergraduate students they teach, according to Inside Higher Ed.

Students who take their first class from a graduate student in a certain major are more likely to major in that subject than those who take their first class from a faculty member.

The study was conducted using undergraduate students at public universities in Ohio who first enrolled in college in fall of 1998 or 1999.

Rising tuition costs are the biggest problem facing higher education

The rising costs of higher education are making access to college more difficult for families, according to a story from the Washington Post.

“Across the country, the average price of a public four-year college in today’s dollars has increased by 13 percent since 2010, according to the College Board. That followed a 24 percent increase between 2005 and 2011.

The increase in tuition costs is occurring at the same time family incomes have decreased.

Growing endowments becoming a cause for concern at universities because of connection to hedge funds

Universities throughout the country have invested a larger portion of their endowments in hedge funds. This practice has led some to question if the practice it putting university funds at risk and the high fees charged by many hedge funds to participate, according to an article from The Nation.

“I was going to donate money to Yale. But maybe it makes more sense to mail a check directly to the hedge fund of my choice,” Malcolm Gladwell tweeted last summer, causing a commotion that landed him on NPR.

While the issue involves larger amounts of cash at larger schools with endowments of more than a billion dollars, public universities are also investing this way. Even Ohio University with an endowment of $553 million has some money invested in hedge funds.

 

Written by Gentry Bennett, Dina Berliner, Rahul Mukherjee, Burton Speakman and Megan Witmer.

What Athens City Council did during the fall semester

For every complaint Ohio University students may have about their rental homes or disrepair of local sidewalks, there’s a local city representative to take it to, though students might not be keenly aware of that fact.

It’s true — someone is making the big decisions around here.

If you’re just catching up with the happening of Athens City Council — which meets every Monday at 7 p.m. in the Athens City Building at 8 E. Washington St. — that’s quite alright. The crew of seven members has been up to a few ordinances and resolutions this past fall semester, and if you feel that it applies to you, you’re always able to catch the next meeting and speak your mind (they’re open to the public.)

Some hubbub surrounding Airbnb

Athens City Council members aren’t the first to air concerns about Airbnb, a popular home-sharing company that boasts 46 rental properties in Athens and thousands nationwide. Residents (and lobbyists, of course) in Washington D.C. and particularly feisty homeowners in New Orleans have decried Airbnb for blurring the lines between hotel and rental service, citing the regulatory concerns and safety hazards typically not bestowed up it. More locally, Abe Alassaf, an Airbnb host in Athens, has recently taken to Athens City Council meetings to speak against a proposed city ordinance that would redefine “bed and breakfast” in the city’s code and possibly place new restrictions on Airbnb users. But, Athens City Planning Commission member Nancy Bain said the ordinance would address issues as simple as installing smoke and carbon dioxide detectors in such homes.

“It sounds like a law enforcement nightmare and an extreme waste of city resources and tax payer money if (city officials) really want to enforce this,” Alassaf said at an Athens City Council meeting in October, according to a Post article. 

Athens City Council members convene for their weekly council meeting where they write, discuss and adopt ordinances into code.
Athens City Council members convene for their weekly council meeting where they write, discuss and adopt ordinances into code. (Patrick Connolly | The Post)

Drilling in Wayne National Park

For the most part, the entirely-democratic city council has long been opposed to hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking, and the placement of injection wells in its jurisdiction.

So, when the federal government announced a few weeks back that, the nearby Wayne National Forest would be considered as a potential site for oil and gas developments. City council members chose to pass a resolution requesting forest management reconsider releasing any of its land to the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, and condemned oil and gas developments as “dangerous” to nearby aquifers.

However, Jackie Stewart, a spokeswoman for Energy In Depth Ohio, told The Post that such leasing has been going on in the region for years, and that there are more than 1,200 active wells in the Wayne National Forest.

Outside of Athens City Council, the Bureau of Land Management held a public hearing on the matter earlier this month that allegedly became contentious after a U.S. Forest Service Officer shoved an environmental activist, according to a Post report.  There were more than a hundred anti-fracking activists at the hearing, though those in support of oil and gas development in the region at the hearing said activists were becoming verbally aggressive.

Hoverboards aren’t that hip

Some call them hoverboards, others call them contraptions meant to kill their users. At an Athens City Council meeting in early November, the Athens Service Safety Director, Paula Horan-Moseley proposed an explicit ban on “electric personal assistive mobility devices” used for recreational purposes, according to a Post report. Her reason was that the devices can lead to congested walkways, and encourage racing among riders.

Nate Doughty stands on his hoverboard outside of Nelson Dining Hall on Oct. 8. (Michael Swensen | The Post)
Nate Doughty stands on his hoverboard outside of Nelson Dining Hall on Oct. 8. (Michael Swensen | The Post)

To be fair, that probably (totally) happens. The hands-free segways are hard to miss around Athens, as students are quickly taking to the device that encourages laziness and has probably resulted in a few head injuries. Still, if such a ban were to go through, students would be unable to use their hundred-dollar devices on Court Street and elsewhere. That’s a lot of pocket change to throw around on a device you can’t use. It pays to watch the government access channel.

Drama in the city building

For those that haven’t been following along, Athens City Auditor Kathy Hecht and Mayor Paul Wiehl have been at odds for several months now. Most recently, that contention was over an ordinance that would affect the vacation accrual of non-union city employees. Hecht even called Wiehl an “ass” at a November city council meeting, according to a Post report. She had said there were sections of the ordinance that directly contradicted with one another.

The spat stems from an incident last year where Hecht granted her employees a non-council approved 2-to-4 percent pay increase.

A Return to Roots

Tom Costello teaches his COMS 1100 class
Tom Costello teaches his COMS 1100 class

Each day is the same for Communication Studies Professor Tom Costello. He wakes up, brews a cup of coffee, and enjoys taking in the scenes around campus. However, Tom doesn’t sit on his porch while enjoying his mornings, instead he, like many of Ohio University’s freshman and sophomores, Costello lives on campus.

A lawyer and Ohio University alum, Costello returned to campus when he was asked to be a Faculty in Residence. The Faculty in Residence program allows for professors to come to campus, teach, but also live in and assist with the Residence Halls,

“The faculty in residence has two responsibilities. First is to the staff, so there to interact with the staff, provide any guidance, advice, counseling, Costello said,“the second piece is interacting with residents, getting to know them, serving as a resource.”

Costello’s background in law has allowed him to host programs in the complex about how to avoid trouble with the law and how to stay out of jail. He has also hosted meals and programs, while also using his appointed budget to help residential assistants plan programs of their own. Costello also volunteers his time to assist in big weekends such as Halloween.

“I think It’s really helpful because they come from whatever background, that they have, especially like Tom, he was a lawyer for a while so having his insight on a couple topics and things like that., having him just share his experiences is really cool and he just helps a bunch” said sophomore RA Erin Walsh.

Costello was a resident of Detroit for over 20 years and this past summer, he sold his home for most of that time, fully committing to life in Athens.

“The first two years I still had a residence in Detroit so the summers we’d go back, this summer we sold the house so this is really home now”

Costello has one more year left on his contract and is excited to continue to experience on campus life, while being able to give life lessons outside of the classroom,

“It’s teaching outside the classroom in a way that, if you are doing it correctly, students are learning without knowing they are learning so by giving examples, counseling, advice and the like, as opposed to standing in front of a classroom and lecturing on a topic,” Costello said.

News recap: How you voted in Tuesday’s election in Athens

This week saw the election of three Athens City Council members — including one independent — and the rejection of marijuana legalization in the state of Ohio. Voters also approved a measure that aims to reduce partisan gerrymandering in the state.

Below is our recap of the results of the election in Athens and what it will mean for Athens residents and Ohioans.

Democrats retained their majority on Athens City Council

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Dennis E. Powell | The Athens NEWS
  • Incumbent Jennifer Cochran and local business owner Peter Kotses, both Democrats, will claim two at-large seats on council, meaning the party will still have a 6-1 majority in Athens. [The Post]
  • The unofficial vote tallies released Tuesday showed that 35 percent of registered voters in Athens County casted their ballots, compared with an about 34 percent voter turnout last November. [The Athens NEWS]
  • While Kotses won about 27 percent of the vote and Cochran won 25 percent, the council race was the only contested race in this year’s elections. The chair of the Athens County Democratic Party said the two are “fantastic public servants and will represent Athens well.” [The Post]

  • Democrat Joan Kraynanski and Aaron Dauterman, an Ohio University senior who ran as a Republican, came in fourth and fifth place respectively in the council at-large race. [The New Political]
  • Kotses, a lifelong resident of Athens and owner of Athens Bicycle, received 1,763 votes, the most votes any candidate received. [The Athens Messenger]

Pat McGee will be the first independent to serve on city council in decades

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Oliver Hamlin | The Post
  • The Democrats didn’t win every seat on Athens City Council, however. Independent candidate Pat McGee won one of the three at-large seats, receiving 1,518 votes, or 23 percent of the total vote. [The Post]
  • McGee, a managing attorney with the Center for Student Legal Services, is the first independent to be elected to an at-large seat on council since at least 1982. [The Athens News]
  • McGee spoke to The Athens Messenger about his success as an independent candidate: “It says to me that people can look beyond labels, even when you have a fairly organized party that you’re opposing.” [The Athens Messenger]
  • The councilman-elect ran on a platform of putting Ohio University students first and encouraged them to vote. [The New Political]
  • McGee graduated from OU in 1970 and then travelled the world for a decade, but has lived in Athens for the past 35 years. Along with advocating for students, he supports marijuana legalization, a looser code enforcement and a raise in the minimum wage to $15 an hour, as long as the money stays in Athens. [The Post]
  • In addition, WOUB published a series of photos depicting election night in Athens. McGee can be seen playing celtic music on the concertina at local bar Jackie-O’s celebrating his win. [WOUB]

No surprise here: Steve Patterson elected mayor of Athens

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Steve Patterson | @MayorPatterson on Twitter
  • Steve Patterson was elected mayor after running unopposed. Patterson, a Democrat, holds an at-large seat on Athens City Council and will begin his term as mayor in January. [The Post]
  • Despite running an uncontested race, Patterson campaigned door to door and watched the polling numbers closely Tuesday. He said he’s elated to have the support of citizens. [The Athens News]
  • Patterson suggested several efforts he wants to work on as mayor. He said he wants to start working on organizing the city’s Halloween block party far earlier, possibly in January. He also suggested ideas to turn certain parts of Uptown into “pedestrian corridors.” [The Athens News]
  • The mayor-elect told The New Political: “It’s time to take Athens to the next level. You know, I’m really tired of the brain drain, and I’m really looking forward to the brain gain in the city of Athens, trying to keep people here.” [The New Political]

Ohio chose gerrymandering reform but rejected marijuana legalization; Athens County said “no” to Issue 2 while Ohio voted “yes”

Konopí
Via Wikimedia Commons
  • Ohio voters had three issues to vote on at Tuesday’s election. Issue 3, the ballot measure that would have legalized recreational and medical marijuana in the state, failed to pass. Meanwhile, Ohio voters passed Issues 1 and 2, which aim to reduce partisan gerrymandering and limit the power of monopolies, respectively. [The Post]
  • The Post also reported that Athens County voters overwhelmingly rejected Issue 3, with about 64 percent of residents voting against the issue and about 36 percent voting for it. About 64 percent of Ohio voters voted “no” on the issue. [The Post]
  • The controversial Issue 3 proposed a monopoly for the commercial sale of recreational and medical marijuana in the state. The executive director of ResponsibleOhio, the group behind Issue 3, said the day after the election: “We started the conversation and we’re going to continue the conversation starting tomorrow. The status quo doesn’t work, it’s unacceptable and we’re not going away.” [The New Political]
  • Issue 2 was put on the ballot to specifically target Issue 3 and will still have consequences despite Issue 3’s failure. It states that if any ballot initiative includes a “commercial interest,” or is otherwise deemed a monopoly, voters will have to pass two measures, one to grant an exception and the other on the proposal itself. [The Athens News]
  • Issue 2 passed in the state of Ohio with about 52 percent of the vote to about 48 percent. Of Ohio’s 88 counties, Athens was one of 16 that rejected Issue 2, with a vote of 53.46 percent against the issue. [The Athens News]
  • Ohio and Athens County voters passed Issue 1, which will amend the Ohio Constitution in an effort to prevent gerrymandering, or the partisan drawing legislative districts. It will create a bipartisan redistricting commission with seven members, two of which must be from the minority party in the state. [The Post]
  • Finally, here’s WOUB’s Election Night Special Report that focused on the election’s state issues. [WOUB]

How RAs celebrate HallOUween

Students were only allowed to use one door this weekend. People were paid to watch the doors to make sure no one snuck in
Students were only allowed to use one door this weekend. People were paid to watch the doors to make sure no one snuck in

Ah Halloween in Athens, you lived up to completely up to my expectations, and boy were they high. I did not think this year’s HallOUween celebration could be anymore boring or slow than last years, but I was wrong.

How can the supposed third largest block party in the nation be so boring one may ask? Well, I was one of many RAs on campus that had to work Friday and Saturday of Halloween weekend. Each year, Housing and Residence Life bumps up all the security for on campus life. Locks are changed so students only have access to one door, wristbands are distributed and required to get back into the halls and every staff member is on duty. These precautions come as a result of the massive influx of people Athens receives for the weekend. People come from all over to experience the bricks of  Court St on Halloween, and for most it is a blast, for RAs, it is a constant battle to stay awake.

RA Halley Davidson shows off her Halloween spirit while on rounds
RA Halley Davidson shows off her Halloween spirit while on rounds

HallOUween preparations begin weeks in advance for RAs. We received documents and went over proper procedure for the weekend three weeks in advance of the holiday. When the weekend does arrive, RAs are present as early as 6 p.m. Friday evening to begin organizing the wristbands to hand out. For my complex, Tanaka-Luchs, we had over 100 registered guests to check in. This process is probably the hardest part of the weekend. Imagine trying to heard a bunch of confused cattle into a room that is clearly not big enough, and then get them to follow a straight line. That’s what it felt like to organize the students and get them the proper wristbands. The line remained outside the door for about an hour and half. Then the real fun began, if one was not on rounds, one was to sit and check wristbands. The thing was that from around nine to around midnight, no one really came back as most were out enjoying the weekend. We had 16 staff members on duty, four of which were checking wristbands, the rest on rounds or on breaks.

My Staff wristband for the weekend. Residents had to wear similar ones, but blue.
My Staff wristband for the weekend. Residents had to wear similar ones, but blue.

Rounds consisted of constantly walking each floor of the building on Friday night, but we changed the role on Saturday, which made it easier, but also made the time go by slower. We stationed a person by the elevator on each floor and they were in charge of making sure no one was doing anything against policy or sneaking in. I was on rounds for three straight hours on Saturday. As the night went on, and I ran out of episodes of “Rick and Morty” to watch, I faced my biggest challenge of the night, staying awake. I actually lost that challenge for about 15 minutes early on, but after hearing reports of a light bulb thief on the loose, I got the kick start I need.

This was my floor at about 12:30 a.m. It was so quiet I could have heard a pin drop
This was my floor at about 12:30 a.m. It was so quiet I could have heard a pin drop

Needless to say HallOUween left much to be desired on my end, but it seems that the precautions taken by Housing and Residence life are a little much. Maybe I was just lucky that our building remained pretty calm throughout the night, but the extra measures taken seem to only add to the lore surrounding the block party. I couldn’t help but wonder that if we didn’t try so hard to keep people out, would it make the festivities less appealing? Adding a $50 charge for students to have a guest sure sounded like it was going to decrease the number of people visiting, but as mentioned before, Tanaka-Luchs saw over 100 guests come to visit.

 

It seems HallOUween will always be a big deal. My father told me about how crazy it was during his time here in the 70s, and despite increased security measures and rules, the party will continue to be one of the best events of the year, except if you’re an RA.