Moving toward the middle of the semester at Keene State, some students are already starting to feel the effects of burn-out. What better remedy than a creative outlet like painting?
While students are still in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Providing them with a way to have fun and blow off some steam, the Keene State College Social Activities Council is regularly planning events for students to have just this kind of outlet.
On March 17, St. Patrick’s Day, members of the council, which is commonly abbreviated to KSC SAC, hosted Paint Night in the Mabel Brown Room. When students walked in, they were greeted and directed to sit at small, socially-distanced tables decked out with green table cloths and chocolate gold coins. Picking up some paint, already portioned out onto a plate, everyone was ready to get started.
Paint Night operates as a guided tutorial on something fun and relatively easy to follow. For St. Patrick’s Day, the subject was, fittingly, a leprechaun with a pot of gold. The tutorial was led by sophomore Lauren Shanahan who gave simple instructions on how to draw the cartoon figure.
Event Coordinator Jake Zamansky said, “There’s lots of versions of paint night. You can express artistry and give different takes. It’s a space away from the stress of campus.”
Students were able to attend this event in-person, or pick up a kit with paint and a canvas to take home. A recording of the tutorial is to be posted on the SAC Instagram account after the event for anyone who decided not to physically attend.
Zamansky noted, “Live streaming [the tutorial] last semester didn’t really work– recording seems to be a better solution.”
“It’s more challenging to do Zoom events,” Zamansky continued. “There’s just not enough interaction between people, you know? It’s a little more bland. It’s not not fun, but not as fun as doing the in-person events.”
The fact that the event was in-person is what inspired students Lindsey Rolling and Jessica Lawton to attend. When asked if they preferred the in-person events, Lawton replied enthusiastically, “Oh, heck yeah! Like the hypnotist and stuff? The whole reason I know about them was because they were in-person… It’s nice to feel like you have an excuse to leave your room.”
Had they been to Paint Night before? “Nope– first time,” said Rolling, “I’m enjoying it, for sure!”
Lawton laughed, “It’s fun! I just can’t draw people.”
Members of the SAC team walked around to see how everyone was doing and compliment everyone on their artistic efforts. One member walked around with a tray of snacks and goodies to all the tables. Sophomore and SAC secretary Michael Von George took some photos for the council’s Instagram, also delighting in every one’s pieces.
For news and information about SAC hosted events, their Instagram @ksc_sac posts regularly about anything new coming up. They also host general meetings every Thursday at 6 p.m. in the Madison Street Lounge in the student center, where they play games and Kahoot. It seems anyone can attend and give some input for event ideas on campus.
Abigail Dix can be contacted at: