Winterfest Snow Day
Winterfest Snow Day Alex
Winterfest Therapy Dogs

It was a winter wonderland at San Bernardino Valley College, with snow on the ground and holiday spirit in the air.

The sixth annual WinterFest was held December 5-9, a collaborative effort between the Department of Marketing and Public Relations, First Year Experience, and Associated Student Government. A celebration to mark the end of the fall semester and start of Winter Break, WinterFest was a little different this year. For the first time, events were spread out across an entire week.

"It's important to hold these fun and relaxing events for our students so they can take a break in between classes and studying," Public Affairs Coordinator Alejandra Aguilera said. "This season can be stressful and we understand that a lot of our students not only have school to worry about, but work, family, and more. They deserve a break. We also want them to know that their efforts are recognized. We hope that these events really make their experience at SBVC even better than they expected."

The fun kicked off on December 5 with therapy dogs and cats in the Liberal Arts Courtyard, with about 80 students stopping by to pet and hang out with the animals. "I remember finding therapy dogs so comforting when I was going to college out of state and thought it was a good idea to bring that to our campus," Aguilera said.

On December 6, a 24-ton pile of snow appeared on the Library Quad and the campus community was invited to play in it before it melted. Close to 700 students came out for Snow Day, and "it was so magical," Aguilera said. "We brought triple the amount of snow compared to last year. There was lots of student interest in snowplay. It's not every day that you get to play in snow at a college in Southern California."

Two Paint and Sip sessions were held on December 7, with students gathering in the Gresham Art Gallery to paint on canvases while enjoying hot chocolate. On December 8, an outdoor screening of How the Grinch Stole Christmas took place under the stars in the Greek Theatre. WinterFest came to a dazzling end on December 9, with a special holiday show in the Planetarium.

The feedback from students was "amazing," Aguilera said. "I received many comments about bringing back most of the events, especially the snow, therapy pets, and Paint and Sip." Participants liked that there was one event every day, which "gave all students an opportunity to have some sort of fun," Aguilera said. "We hope to do the same next year, but better!"

Aguilera is incredibly grateful to everyone who helped make WinterFest Week a reality. "That includes our creative, social media, and web team, Associated Student Government, the Office of Student Life, and First Year Experience," she said. "It was very evident at every event that our students had fun. It is such a privilege to be able to help create such awesome memories for our students."

Winterfest Therapy Day Winterfest Paint n Sip Winterfest Paint n Sip 2