Eagle Nation Day brings UMW athletics and Fredericksburg community together
By HABIBA NOOR
Eagle Nation Day hosted by University of Mary Washington athletics was filled with fun and free activities that allowed you to be on your feet and keep your mind active. Held on Saturday, Sept. 10, from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., this event was to encourage kids to go out and play with UMW athletes and get active.
As soon as you parked your car, you heard the loud, pumping music to get you excited. As you walked into the Battleground Athletic Complex, you saw basketballs, softballs, tennis and lacrosse balls in the air and heard kids playing with UMW students cheering them on.
Thankfully, UMW is highly involved in the Fredericksburg community. For example, Sylvan Learning Center partnered with Professor Andrea Smith’s students to host “Learning with LEGOs,” and kids were definitely involved in building and creating anything possible with those tiny LEGO blocks.
On the fourth annual Eagle Nation Day, President Paino was seen playing mini golf and Dean Rucker was capturing the moments with his iPad, cheering everyone on with his smile. Riverbend High School came out to help run bubble ball sports, where kids enjoyed rolling in giant bubble balls.
First-time comers Paragon Gymnastics brought tumbling equipment for the little ones. As temperatures soared, everyone was taking advantage of the snow cones drizzled with various Gatorade syrups.
This free family-friendly event also had free Chick-fil- A sandwiches for the first 1,000 individuals. The UMW Riding team came out with their horses for kids to ride, as well as Sammy D. Eagle and the Chick-Fil- A mascot being available for photo-ops.
At 11 a.m. the Fredericksburg Field House inflatables packed up the one bouncy house, leaving kids disappointed. With shirts drenched in sweat, the baseball team enjoyed having Gatorade bottles, using them as refreshments as well as stacking them up and hitting them with a baseball.
Eagle Nation Day is an annual event held every September and it leads into a full day of UMW sports. On this Eagle Nation Day, women’s soccer hosted a game shortly followed by field hockey. The women’s soccer team lost in double overtime to Coast Guard and field hockey lost a close game to Franklin & Marshall by a score of 3-2.