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  • The 20 Best College Traditions In The US

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    Each college has beloved traditions that students have kept alive through the years.
    We've put together a list of the best college traditions from around the country. Some of these—like the Dartmouth Winter Carnival—are loved by students and school officials alike. However, traditions such as the Mirror Lake Jump at Ohio State are enjoyed much more by students than faculty.Cornell Dragon Day at Cornell University
    When: Every March
    Year it began: Sometime between 1897 and 1901
    The tradition of Dragon Day goes back more than one hundred years. Every March, first-year architecture students band together to build a massive dragon, which they parade across campus. The dragon then "battles" with a large phoenix, built by engineering students.
    Spirit Splash at the University of Central Florida
    When: End of October
    Year it began: 1995
    For Spirit Splash, students at the University of Central Florida rush into the campus's Reflecting Pond to celebrate homecoming weekend. The tradition started in 1995 when someone pushed the student body president into the pond. Spirit Splash won the "Best Campus Tradition" award from the National Association for Campus Activities.
    THON Weekend at Pennsylvania State University
    When: Every February
    Year it began: 1973
    THON Weekend is 46-hour no-sitting, no-sleeping dance marathon that takes place every February at Penn State. The marathon is for a good cause, with a majority of the proceeds going toward the Four Diamonds Fund to fight pediatric cancer. THON has raised more than $114 million for the cause since the tradition began in 1977.
    The Great Midwest Trivia Contest at Lawrence University
    When: The last weekend in January
    Year it began: 1966
    The Great Midwest Trivia Contest at Lawrence University is an extraordinary challenge, with 50 straight hours of trivia from Friday to Sunday. The contest is known as the "world's longest-running trivia contest" because each year a question from a previous year begins the new contest.
    Page 2 of 5 - The Krispy Kreme Challenge at North Carolina State University
    When: Every February
    Year it began: 2004
    This tradition involves a lot of running and a lot of doughnuts. Runners will travel 2.5 miles to a Krispy Kreme shop, eat a dozen doughnuts, and run 2.5 miles back to NC State's campus. The Krispy Kreme Challenge began as a dare between some undergraduate students, and has now become a huge event with proceeds supporting the North Carolina Children's Hospital.
    The University of Chicago Scavenger Hunt
    When: Beginning of May. The last day of the hunt is always Mother's Day.
    Year it began: 1987
    The University of Chicago Scavenger Hunt spans four days in May and includes a list of items to find, a blood drive, and a road trip that can take participants as far as 1,000 miles from Chicago. This event currently holds the Guinness World Record for the world's largest scavenger hunt.
    Civilians vs. Cadets Snowball Fight at Virginia Tech
    When: The first big snowfall of the year
    Year it began: Unknown
    Virginia Tech's student body used to be entirely Reserve Officer Training Corps. Every year during the first big snowfall, students break up into two teams—cadets and civilians—and duke it out in a massive snowball fight in honor of the school's history.
    The Pull at Hope College
    When: Every September
    Year it began: 1898
    The Pull is an annual tug-of-war contest held at Hope College. Each team has 18 "pullers" as well as 18 "moralers," who have the responsibility of boosting morale. The longest pull lasted for three hours and 51 minutes, and the shortest was only two minutes and 40 seconds. "Sports Illustrated" named the Pull the "mother of all tug-of-war."
    Renn Fayre at Reed College
    When: End of April/beginning of May
    Year it began: 1960s
    Renn Fayre is a crazy tradition that celebrates the end of the school year and features music, food, art, a giant slide and skate ramp, and naked students covered in blue paint. One of the highlights is the Thesis Parade, where seniors burn all of their thesis notes in a bonfire and then march around campus.
    Page 3 of 5 - Dolphy Day at Le Moyne College
    When: Every spring
    Year it began: 1971
    Dolphy Day is a tradition at Le Moyne College that surprises students with a day off. The date of the surprise holiday is kept secret until the last minute, and celebrations begin at 2 a.m. with fireworks. Throughout the rest of the day, students enjoy barbecues and partying.
    Little 500 at Indiana University
    When: Every April
    Year it began: 1951
    The Little 500 at Indiana University is modeled after the Indy 500 and is the largest collegiate bike race in the country. Four-person teams compete against each other in a race; the men's race is 200 laps, and the women's race is 100 laps. More than 25,000 people come out to this event, and proceeds to go toward raising scholarship money for students.
    Drake Relays at Drake University
    When: Every April
    Year it began: 1910
    The renowned Drake Relays have been a tradition for more than 100 years, and attract more than 40,000 spectators each year. Races feature both world-class athletes and college teams, making for a very exciting campus event.
    Dartmouth Winter Carnival at Dartmouth College
    When: Every February
    Year it began: 1910
    The Dartmouth Winter Carnival has been a tradition for over 100 years and features events such as ski races, an ice sculpture contest, a polar bear swim, and a human dog sled race. One of the greatest parties during this event is the Alpha Chi Alpha beach party, a tradition since 1976.
    The Harvard-Yale Football Game
    When: Every November
    Year it began: 1883
    The Harvard Crimson and the Yale Bulldogs football teams are major rivals, and every November they face off in The Game to the delight of many spirited students and alumni. The 2014 event will take place on November 22 and will be the 131st anniversary of The Game.
    Page 4 of 5 - Carnegie Mellon Sweepstakes at Carnegie Mellon University
    When: Every April
    Year it began: 1920
    Sweepstakes, also known as "Buggy," is a competition between campus organizations where each team builds torpedo-shaped vehicles and pushes them in a relay race. The race has taken place every year since 1920.
    ASU BB Run at Arizona State University
    When: Beginning of May/last day of classes
    Year it began: 2008
    For the ASU BB (bras and boxers) Run, more than 15,000 students at Arizona State run across the Tempe campus in nothing more than their bras and underwear to celebrate the end of classes. In addition to the run, there is plenty of music and entertainment. After shedding their clothing, students can donate it to Goodwill Arizona.
    Rotblatt at Carleton College
    When: During spring term
    Year it began: 1967
    Rotblatt is an annual softball game where students play one inning for every year Carleton College has been in existence. Since the university is 148 years old, students played for 148 innings this year. One of the rules for Rotblatt is that you must have a beverage in your hand at all times.
    Mirror Lake Jump at Ohio State University
    When: End of November
    Year it began: 1990
    Every year, thousands of students gather together and plunge into the freezing Mirror Lake to celebrate the Ohio State vs. Michigan football game. School officials tried to control the jump in 2013, but students went ahead with the tradition as usual.
    Purdue Grand Prix at Purdue University
    When: Every April
    Year it began: 1958
    The Purdue Grand Prix is an exciting go-kart race at Purdue University. Any student can participate in the race, and every five years an alumni race is held so former students can relive their glory. There is also a Classic race, where only go-karts built before 1986 can enter. There is a whole week of celebrations leading up to this event.
    Page 5 of 5 - Beer Bike at Rice University
    When: Every March
    Year it began: 1957
    During the Beer Bike relay race at Rice, each residential college has three teams. One person on each team chugs beer or water (depending on their age), and once they finish, a biker on the team can start to race a set amount of laps around the track. On their last lap, the team's next chugger begins. After the race, there is a huge water balloon fight.
    Now check out the best college campuses:
    The 20 Best College Campuses In The U.S. >
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