Traditions

Traditions

Get a head start on your status as a Hillsdalian.

You’ll quickly learn that there’s no place quite like Hillsdale, and that’s true for our campus traditions, too.

Thatcherball

Thatcherball

A winter sport invented by and played only by us, it has a simple goal: run the football through the snow from one side of the Quad to the other and score by dropping the football in the lap of Margaret Thatcher’s statue. (Yes, Lady Thatcher knew about it, and approved.)

Statue Golf

Statue Golf

Grab a nine iron, and hit the links on our Liberty Walk. Tee up a Wiffle ball, and golf from statue to statue, connecting with George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, Margaret Thatcher, and Ronald Reagan.

Garden Party

Garden Party

Held at the “Arb” (shorthand for our Slayton Arboretum), it’s the first big gathering after freshman orientation. A great time to unwind and get to know everybody.

Shakespeare in the Arb

Shakespeare in the Arb

It’s both the name of a student-led drama troupe and the location where they’ve been performing plays by the Bard every spring for more than a decade.

Senior Sidewalk

Senior Sidewalk

When you’re a Hillsdale senior, you earn the right to finish your time on campus by painting a blue and white message—funny, touching, profound—on our network of sidewalks.

Centralhallapalooza

Centralhallapalooza

This is a biggie. At the end of the year, Hillsdale throws a huge celebratory festival, and everyone’s invited. There are big music acts and surprises (like a live elephant) to give the academic year a proper and amazing send-off.

Epic Week

Epic Week

The air has turned crisp, the birds are flying south—why, it must be time for the annual outdoor reading-aloud of great epic poetry. Head to the small stage near the quad where two honor societies, Eta Sigma Phi (classics) and Lambda Iota Tau (literary studies), stir the hearts of passersby with Homer, Virgil, and Dante.

Naval Battle

Naval Battle

It’s our Lake Winona plus a fleet of cardboard boats plus a gleefully misguided sense of what constitutes historical re-enactment. As a writer for The Collegian observed, “Think more rugby in a monsoon than ‘Master and Commander.’”