A pirate, a geisha and an '80s girl walk into a cafeteria....
It's not the setup of a joke but what actually happened at Washington State Community College on Wednesday with a student Halloween costume contest that was part of the school's second annual homecoming.
"I really wanted to (participate) this year because it is my last year here at the school," said Fleming resident Tammy Holshu, 40, an accounting student who dressed as a pirate for the contest and took home the award for scariest costume thanks to a concealed (plastic) blade.
EVAN BEVINS The Marietta Times
Faculty and staff in Washington State Community College’s Arts and Sciences office show off their Harry Potter-inspired costumes and decorations for the school’s annual office-decorating contest.
While only Holshu and two other students entered the contest, a number of students, faculty and staff got into the Halloween spirit with costumes and decorated offices. Arts and Sciences Department employees, led by English instructor Amanda Anderson, converted their offices into Harry Potter's alma mater, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
The transformation featured smoke from dry ice provided by a chemistry instructor, decorations by art students and alterations to portraits of the college's presidents to resemble characters from the series. Anderson said they started planning for it shortly after last year's decorating contest.
"The arts and sciences, that kind of goes with the witchcraft and wizardry," she said.
If you go
What: Family Movie Night showing of "Brave," rated PG; open to the public.
When: 6:30 p.m. Friday.
Where: Graham Auditorium, Arts & Sciences Building, Washington State Community College.
Who: Open to the public.
Instructors and staff members dressed as characters from the book and movie series.
"Oh, everybody wants to be a kid," said adjunct mathematics professor Joyce Dye, clad in black wizards' robes and scarf representing the Hufflepuff house and going by the name "Professor Mathematica." "There's a kid in all of us."
Although it doesn't have a football game to build around, Washington State started its own homecoming last year as part of its 40th anniversary celebration. The slate of events expanded this year, with students and employees invited to dress in the school's colors of green and white for a spirit day last Friday and a pink pumpkin-carving contest Tuesday that raised $116 for the Phi Theta Kappa Relay for Life team. Seven students entered, and Holshu took first prize, as determined by whose pumpkin got the most donations.
Marietta resident Carrie Barth, who won the overall costume prize for her geisha getup featuring a kimono from Okinawa, said she likes having a homecoming at Washington State.
"It gives something to do and to bring more unity as a school other than this place that you come, (learn) and you leave," said Barth, 22.
Homecoming continues today with the announcement of the student senate officer election winners, free drinks for students and employees from Stoked and Nintendo Wii games set up in the Community Room.
On Friday, alumni, family, friends and members of the public are invited to join the celebration with a free screening of the movie "Brave" in the Graham Auditorium.