Posts tagged ‘Bryce Jordan Center’
Recent Penn State grad Maxwell Kruger ’09 has just posted a new video of this year’s THON—a time-lapse video made up of more than 13,000 still images shot over the course of the weekend.
Maxwell did the same thing last year, but this year he tried to outdo himself—with new equipment, more photos, different angles. The result is pretty impressive.
Tina Hay, editor
Diana Hirsch thought she knew what she was in for. She’d danced in THON before, and she had recently participated in AlumniTHON, which gave her the chance to experience a baby-powder massage again.
Hirsch’s second THON, however, wasn’t quite what she expected. Her previous THON was in 1991, and those 19 years did take a bit of a toll. “I don’t remember there being so many peaks and valleys,” Hirsch ’92 said Sunday morning, after about 33 hours on her feet. “There are so many more ups and downs mentally and physically. And all kinds of aches!”
Her partner, Candace Brown ’00, was also dancing after a long layoff; she had last participated 10 years ago, and she couldn’t believe how much THON had grown in a decade. The two were representing the Dance Marathon Alumni Interest Group, which had two couples in THON 2010.
The last time Hirsch danced, THON was in White Building and raised less than $1 million for the Four Diamonds Fund. The last time Brown danced, THON was in Rec Hall, and raising $7.8 million, the 2010 total, was unimaginable.
Both women had to deal with more outside factors this time around. Brown, for example, fielded cell-phone calls from her three children, 5-year-old Bria, 4-year-old Casson, and 2 1/2-year-old Mayah. She explained that she was tired from dancing for hours, and Bria said, “Mommy, you need to go to bed. You need to go to sleep and rest.” That made Brown laugh, and she answered, “You’re right, but I can’t do that right now.”
They were a bit of an odd couple. Hirsch didn’t want to have any idea how much time remained, so she adjusted the settings on her iPhone so that she appeared to be in Toyko on Wednesday, Aug. 27, 2014. Brown didn’t change a thing; she needed specifics. “I want to know down to the last second what time it is,” she said. “I am not going to be one of those dancers who needs to sit down around 3:50 p.m.” Hirsch got a stack of packages at mail call (see photo at right, by our graphic designer, Jessie Knuth), but Brown, who flew in from Denver, made her family and friends promise to send nothing big. “I travel light,” she said, grinning.
They agreed, however, that they were much less conscious of their appearance than their college-age counterparts. “They’re washing their hair in the sinks in the bathrooms, using hair spray and straightening irons,” Brown said, laughing. “They’re changing clothes five times. Me, I’ve got two shirts.”
And they were of one mind about the most important things: That THON was among the most meaningful experiences of their college years, and that they were thrilled and honored to be back on the floor.
“And we’ve already made plans,” Hirsch said, “to be back here again in 10 years.”
Jessie and I weren’t going to hold them to that, as we were talking at 3:15 a.m. Sunday. For all we knew, they were having some of those fabled hallucinations. But they felt the same way at the end, and given that they weathered 46 hours on their feet as well as—or better than—the students, we won’t be surprised to see them in 2020.
Lori Shontz, senior editor
The Penn State women’s basketball team got a great win on Sunday, beating Illinois 70-66—the Lady Lions have now won six straight and are second in the Big Ten standings, which is terrific to see after a couple of years where Penn State really struggled.
Today was the fourth annual Pink Zone Day, where everybody—and I mean everybody—wore pink; more than 250 breast-cancer survivors were honored at halftime; and more than $66,000 was raised for breast cancer charities.
Below is a montage of four photos I took today, with captions below.
Tina Hay, editor
If you haven’t been back to the State College area in a while, one thing that might surprise you is how much it has blossomed into a great area for the performing arts. We’ve had performance venues on campus—like Eisenhower and Schwab Auditorium—for a long time, but the 15,000-seat Bryce Jordan Center brought a whole new dimension when it opened in 1995. The BJC has brought shows ranging from Bruce Springsteen to Jay-Z to Tim McGraw to the Rockettes to monster truck rallies.
Filling a niche at the other end of the spectrum is the State Theatre on College Avenue, which seats not quite 600 and offers a much more intimate setting for concerts and films. It’s been been a fixture in State College since it opened in 1938, but for most of its life it was a movie theatre. Then it closed in 2001, underwent a major renovation, and reopened three years ago this month as a nonprofit community arts center. (Nashville’s Mike Reid ’69 helped support the project and was the performer on opening night.)
One of the first shows at the State Theatre back in December 2006 was a Christmas concert by the Irish traditional group Cherish the Ladies, and last night, that group came back for another show. I’m a big fan of Irish music and especially of Cherish the Ladies, so I was there for their 2006 concert and again last night—and last night I was given permission to do some photography.
How much photography the news media can do at a concert depends on the performers—some don’t permit it at all; others allow you to shoot for the first three songs and that’s it. Cherish the Ladies, bless ’em, had no such restrictions—I was able to click away all night long. Click on any of the photos here to see them bigger, or check out my Flickr site to view about 15 shots from last night’s show (or see them in slide-show format here).
Tina Hay, editor
Hip-hop star Jay-Z kicked off his 21-city tour on Friday night at—of all places—Penn State’s Bryce Jordan Center. He drew a sellout crowd for the show, which coincided with the release of his new album The Blueprint 3.
Andy Colwell of Penn State Public Information was there and got some great shots. You can see the slide show here.
Tina Hay, editor
Yesterday a Penn State student by the name of Maxwell Kruger sent us some photos he took at THON last month, along with links to several videos he produced. He got access to the catwalks above the Jordan Center and filmed some time-lapse videos from above. The one here shows THON in its entirety, from setup to tear down, in time-lapse video. You can see them taking apart the basketball court, laying down a different floor for THON, the whole bit. Just very, very cool.
Kruger also has a blog where he shows what he’s doing in photography—and he is definitely doing some interesting stuff.
Tina Hay, editor
If you didn’t catch Penn State’s exhilarating, last-second, come-from-behind defeat of No. 23 Illinois on Thursday night, you missed what was probably the biggest game and best crowd in Bryce Jordan Center history. (For a recap with video highlights, click here.) If the win didn’t earn the Nittany Lions an NCAA Tournament bid, it got them awfully close. One more win — either in Saturday’s regular-season finale at Iowa, or at next week’s Big Ten tournament — should seal the deal.
For me, the game was only the highlight of a great afternoon and evening at the Jordan Center. The 9 p.m., ESPN-mandated tip off was a drag, but it had a silver lining for those of us who cover the team. Brian Siegrist, the media relations liaison for the men’s basketball team, was able to secure an hour of court time for media members, and I joined the rag-tag crew — Siegrist, Blue White Illustrated writers Nate Bauer ’05 and Sean Fitz, Dave Jones of the Patriot-News, and the Daily Collegian trio of Matt Brown, Matt Fortuna, and Nate Mink — for a late-afternoon full-court run. I’m more sore today (and missed more easy shots) than I’d like to admit, but it was a lot of fun.
A couple of hours later, it was time for the real players to take their turn. The game and atmosphere were amazing — thanks in part to Penn State quarterback Daryll Clark, who took the mic before tipoff to hype up the whited-out crowd, which responded in kind. They, and the national TV audience, got quite a show: Penn State was down 10 with five minutes left, and senior leader Jamelle Cornley was out with what looked like a separated shoulder (though he somehow came back into the game a few minutes later, practically dragging his arm around the court). Fellow senior Stanley Pringle hit some huge shots to keep the game close, and then, predictably, it was uber-confident sophomore guard Talor Battle taking the ball the length of the court in the closing seconds and hitting a driving layup that almost seemed to stop on the rim before dropping in. Cue thousands of white-clad fans storming the court. It was quite a moment.
There was another slightly less monumental (but no less cool) moment at halftime, when the entertainment featured a game between the Bellefonte fifth-and sixth-grade boys rec league teams. The highlight of that game was a surging layup by one Ian Marshall, son of Penn Stater editorial assistant Barb. I hope Ed DeChellis was paying attention — the kid can play.
Ryan Jones, senior editor
A colleague down the hall sent me the link to this year’s official IFC/Panhel Dance Marathon video, which is a minute-and-a-half long and well worth the time. According to YouTube, it’s been viewed more than 13,000 times already!
This morning’s Centre Daily Times has a short op-ed piece by a faculty member who was skeptical of the whole THON phenomenon when he first arrived on campus 10 years ago—but whose 5-year-old daughter ended up benefiting from THON in a way that completely changed his perspective. He makes a point that I had never thought about before:
“Beyond the wonder that is Four Diamonds,” he writes, “the students of Thon act as role models for all three of our daughters…. These undergraduates set an example of selfless commitment to a cause, of the volunteering spirit, of the joy of working together as a team toward a noble goal, of the obligation that we as adults have to help others—especially children.”
THON starts tomorrow in the Bryce Jordan Center.
Tina Hay, editor
Today was the Lady Lion basketball team’s third annual “Pink Zone” day, an event to raise awareness for breast-cancer research, and I think I’ll be seeing pink for the next three days at least. The Bryce Jordan Center was just a sea of pink today—the fans wore pink, the Lady Lion players wore pink, the Iowa players wore pink, the refs used pink whistles, the game ball had a pink Nike swoosh stripe … you get the idea.
There was a very impressive halftime ceremony honoring breast-cancer survivors and their families, and a bunch of money (exact amount to be announced later) was raised for breast-cancer-related charities.
The Lady Lions lost, 63-57—they blew a 20-point lead, which was frustrating. And some of the players in tears after the game; they’ve just lost far too many close games this year. But despite their disappointment they stuck around to sign pink T-shirts and pink ballcaps for the fans.
Below are some photos I took during the game. I’m the PA announcer for women’s basketball games at the Jordan Center, so my seat at the scoring table gives me a great view … I don’t usually bring my camera, as I’m usually too busy during the game to shoot photos, but today was special.
Oh, and after the game I stopped into Faccia Luna for a quick bite to eat, and the place was packed—with at least a third of the patrons wearing pink.
Tina Hay, editor
In addition to my role at the magazine, I’m also the public-address announcer for Lady Lion basketball games at the Jordan Center—you know, the person who says “Would you all please rise for the national anthem” and “The foul’s on so-and-so; it’s her second, team’s fourth.” So I was happy to watch Penn State blow out Stony Brook last night, 97-58. But I was also bummed to hear that a much-sought-after recruit, Skylar Diggins, announced last night that she’s going to Notre Dame. (Stanford and Penn State were also in the running for her.)
On the other hand, Lady Lion coach Coquese Washington did land four great recruits for next year, including Nikki Greene—one of the top 20 recruits in the country. The team badly needs some big players and Greene, at 6’4″, has the potential to be amazing.
While I’ve been a basketball fan since I was a kid, our senior editor, Ryan Jones, is way more savvy about the sport than I am—he used to be editor in chief at Slam magazine. He follows the Penn State men’s team a little more closely than I do, and he’ll give you updates on them from time to time, I’m sure.
Tina Hay, editor