Sunday, February 13, 2011 The Sunday Skate another MCC first A s part of its 40th anniversary celebration, Middlesex welcomed more than 200 people to a new community event on the college’s Bedford campus pond – the first Sunday Skate! Organizers of the February event weren’t sure what to expect, this being the first time it was held, but were surprised and thrilled when so many people showed up for the two-hour free skate. Nearly half the crowd consisted of young children eager to take a few turns around the makeshift rink created atop the frozen pond along the college’s Fitness Trail, which opened to the public in 2010. The idea for the free skate bubbled up while college administrators were researching the college’s history and learned about the work done along the trail by a former seminarian who developed a portion of the pond into a summer swimming hole. The MCC Foundation felt a Sunday Skate would be a great way to show people a new facet of the college’s Bedford campus, while creating a fun community partnership. As children did laps around the rink, some of them held onto milk crates for stability, while others clasped their parents’ supportive hands. The Middlesex hockey team also skated throughout the crowd, offering assistance wherever possible and helpful tips to the youngest skaters. The team also served as human “zambonis,” shoveling the ice to periodically keep it smooth for skaters. A light snowfall during the middle of the event only added to the flavor, which many compared to an old Victorian-style skate, or as one attendee remarked, “something right out of Currier and Ives.” On shore, non-skaters huddled around two barrel fires toasting marshmallows for s’mores. Middlesex staffers furiously poured nearly 200 cups of hot chocolate for the attendees, while festive music filled the air. All in all, the event was an overwhelming success, and one that’s sure to continue, as long as New England winters produce the temperatures needed to freeze the water. Next year, organizers plan to expand the size of the rink to encompass more of the pond. 122