Keuka College alumna Dorisanne Weimert Osborn ’51 seldom misses an event at her beloved alma mater.
So when she saw on the College alumni Facebook page that a first-of-its-kind snowball fight was planned, she was eager to don her KC winter gear, make the one-block drive to campus, and jump into the fray.
Just one problem: More than half a foot of snow covered her driveway – a lot of shoveling, especially for a retiree less than two months short of her 90th birthday.
Little did she know help was on the way.
“Dorisanne commented (on the Facebook page) that’s she’d love to take part but her car was blocked in,” said Katerina Schlabig ’20, who knows Dorisanne well through her work as president of the College’s Future Alumni Network (KC FAN), which organized the snowball fight. “Michael Chapman ’21, another member of KC FAN who saw the post, texted and said, ‘Let’s shovel out Dorisanne!’ Then Dorisanne posted, ‘I’ll donate $20 to Keuka College if any students can shovel me out.’ We all thought the same thing!”
Katerina, Michael, and a contingent of classmates were soon on Dorisanne’s doorstep.
“We had a wonderful day,” Dorisanne said in complimenting the impromptu shovel brigade. “They came down and in 10 minutes they cleared the whole driveway off.”
With her coast clear, Dorisanne was able to take center stage the next day at the College’s first “Green vs. Gold” snowball fight. (Green and gold are the College colors; “green” designates alumni graduating in even-numbered years, “gold” in odd-numbered years.)
And she had a strategy.
“I was thinking of coming on my walker,” she mused, “and sort of challenging people to knock out that old lady.”
Her introduction at the snowball fight, held at 4 p.m. Wednesday on the College campus between Norton Chapel and Ball Hall, was met with a rousing cheer.
“The last man standing, that team wins” a walker-less Dorisanne told her teammates, “so you gotta’ protect me.”
With Associate Director of Alumni Relations Laurie Adams running defense for her, Dorisanne was indeed protected. The Green team won the spirited contest, but that hardly mattered to Dorisanne.
“I had a wonderful time,” she said as she headed to the College’s Oak Room for a post-snowball battle hot chocolate.
For the students who cleared Dorisanne’s path to campus, it was a matter of helping out someone whose decades of support have long helped students like them.
“It was nice to be able to help Dorisanne,” said Katerina. “She’s done so much for the College. It’s nice to know we still have alumni that are so dedicated to the College.”
Michael added that the students’ spirit simply reflected the College’s signature.
“I guess ‘Believing in What We Can Do Together’ speaks to me a lot with this,” he said. “We have a lot of alumni and they worked together and did what they needed to do during their time and I believe it’s our mission now to do what we can do together.”