Hallow-Homecoming Weekend At JMU

Hallow-Homecoming-Audition Weekend, OH MY!

It's the most exciting and stressful weekend of the fall semester.

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The fall semester is flying by, as usual, and we're already halfway through it. If you're a senior like myself, you'd do anything in your power to slow down the time. We're now in the single-digit countdown to Halloween… what? How did October pass by so fast! I don't even know what I'm going to be for Halloween yet (lol). I'll probably end up wearing one of the classic costumes that come up every year and rotates around. The month of October is one of my favorites in college. It's the official beginning of all things fall, the weather cools down, the leaves are changing, Halloween is just around the corner, alumni are planning their annual trip back to JMU for Homecoming weekend, AND it's officially the start audition season (dance majors know what I'm talking about).

This year, Halloween weekend, Homecoming, and auditions for the Fall Student Dance Concert at JMU (which you should definitely go see) all fall on the same weekend. Cue the excitement… and stress! Halloween isn't as big in college as it was when you were little, but there's still a bunch of fun things going on. There's less pressure to pick the "perfect" costume to dress up in during college. In middle school, I feel like I picked out my costume over a month in advance. You had to go to the costume store and make sure they had the right size or you had to pick a new costume. If you're crafty, you probably made your own costume and saved yourself the trouble from going to overcrowded pop-up Halloween stores. Since coming to college, Pinterest has become my favorite resource for finding a Halloween costume idea that I can quickly put together.

Since Halloween is during the week this year, the consensus on campus seems to be that people will be celebrating it the weekend before as well as the weekend after. Honestly probably the week of too. JMU likes to go all out. Having Homecoming weekend the same weekend of Halloween celebrations is going to be a blast. It's a two-for-one! I bet there will be at least one person who wears their Halloween costume to the Homecoming football game. It's happened before and it's hilarious. Homecoming weekend is super fun because a lot of alumni come back for the big game and there are tons of events going on around campus to celebrate our amazing alumni.

I love getting to see my sorority sisters who graduated and are planning to come back and visit during Homecoming weekend. My big is coming back and I haven't seen her in a year! I'm so excited! We just added a new member to our sorority family this week and I can't wait for her to meet my big. It's crazy to think that this time next year, I'll be an alumnus coming back for this weekend. Just wow.

At the conclusion of Hallow-Homecoming weekend is the big audition for the Fall Student Dance Concert. All of us dance majors are both excited and anxious for the final hurrah after half a semester of creating dance pieces to audition for our November student concert. Sunday is going to be a long day of dancing, stressing, and evaluating but it's the time when all the hard work finally comes together. I am serving on the panel that determines which pieces will be represented in the concert. I am excited to have the opportunity to watch all of the pieces auditioning as well as help determine which ones will make up the Fall Student Dance Concert.

Happy Hallow-Homecoming- (whatever else you have) weekend!

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3 Real Cases Of Horror From Around The World

Even in our day and age, some events defy logical explanation.
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Whether you love or hate Halloween, we’ve all felt the creeping tendrils of doubt when confronted with things that don’t meet our expectations of reality—that light you’re sure you turned off, or the bedroom door that randomly creaks open. It’s easy to dismiss plastic masks and fake blood as the bargain bins of costumes start cropping up, but unexplainable mysteries, documented then debated, continue to persist even in our day and age of waning privacy. In occult theory, paranormal activity can spike around 3:00AM as a supernatural dig at the Holy Trinity. In the supernatural spirit of the season, here are three of the creepiest incidences of horror that have captivated the world.

1. Mexico’s Isla de las Muñecas

Just outside the busy capital of Mexico City exists an island, known by locals as Isla de las Muñecas—the Island of the Dolls. Buried within the winding canals, this interesting/horrifying collection of dead-eyed dolls began in the 1950s. Don Julian Santana Barrera, a farmer who moved to the island, found in one of the canals a drowned, young girl—and later, the first doll. Barrera initially displayed the doll on a tree to comfort and perhaps appease the girl’s spirit, but then began doing the same with whatever other dolls he found in the waters, and later with the dolls that other locals would bring to trade for farm produce from the island, a former Aztec floating garden. Some also believe that Barrera was possessed by the spirit of the girl, who drove him to collect and display the dolls until his death in 2001—when Barrera's nephew found him floating in the canals, in the same spot the young girl's body appeared.

2. Japan’s Suicide Forest

Aokigahara, or the Sea of Trees, is a forest located near Mount Fuji, famous for its thick foliage and preference as a suicide destination. Popularized in the United States early this year by “The Forest”, Suicide Forest is estimated to be used as the final destination by as many as 100 people every year. The forest is said to be haunted by the spirits of those who died there—those that committed suicide, and those who were abandoned in ancient times by their impoverished families. Additionally, the iron-rich soil makes cellphones, GPS, and even compasses unreliable, though many purport this is another sign of demonic presence. The Japanese government enacted a formal plan to reduce suicide rates 20% over the next seven years, including the implementation of patrols and signs (bearing messages such as “Think carefully about your children, your family”) throughout the forest.

3. Philippines’s Clarita Villanueva

In 1953, the world watched as news stations broadcasted from Manila, creating one of the most documented cases of demonic possession in recorded history. The exorcism was conducted on an 18-year-old girl named Clarita Villanueva who believed she was seeing and being bitten by two creatures. Visitors to the supposedly possessed girl included the medical examiner and Mayor Arsenio Lacson, who claimed he saw bite marks appear on Villanueva. Rev. Lester Sumrall led the apparently successful exorcism—and a reported 150,000 people who had followed the story in the news converted to Christianity.
Cover Image Credit: PEXELS

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The Holiday Season In Disney Described By These 6 Gifs

Holidays in Disney are a little different in Disney compared to everyone else..

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If you're anything like me and know way too much about Disney or just love it, you'll know that the holidays in Disney tend to be a little different then in other places.

1. It's late August and Fall decorations begin to enter the parks.

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It's only late August and it is still in the 90s in Florida but everyone is excited because all of the Fall decorations are entering the park and Halloween parties are about to start!

2. Don't worry. It's October now, Fall is actually starting.

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It's finally Fall, which means all of the country is excited for PSL at Starbucks. While everyone at Disney has already been enjoying all the Fall food and drink specials for weeks now.

3. It's not even October 31st and it feels like Disney has been celebrating Halloween for 3 years now.

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Halloween and Fall have been celebrated in Disney for so long. We aren't sure if we missed it or if it has even happened at all yet.

4. It's October 31st, which means it's finally Halloween for real this time.

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We finally made it to Halloween after celebrating it for almost 2 months! Yay, good job Disney!

5. November 1st can only mean one thing. Christmas is starting now.

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It's officially Christmas in Disney! Now we get to celebrate Christmas for the next 2 months! Hold on to your Santa hats everyone.

6. If you're wondering, Thanksgiving is the forgotten Holiday.

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No Thanksgiving celebrations in Disney! Just Halloween and Christmas, sorry to all of the Thanksgiving lovers out there.

If you're anything like me and love Disney, the holidays tend to be a little different there. Disney does Halloween and Christmas right every year, but sometimes we just want to celebrate those holidays one day out of the year instead of 2 months each.

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