Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Laramie Project at UAF

Word up, friends!

I'm running out of silly ways to open my blog posts :) A couple of weeks ago, Theatre UAF did a presentation of The Laramie Project in the Lee H Salisbury Theatre. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the play, it is an analysis of the reaction of the people in the town of Laramie Wyoming following the 1998 brutal beating and eventual death of Matthew Shepard, a 21 year old University of Wyoming student. Why was he killed? He was gay. This was a hate crime of the most heinous sort.

The play is a brilliant observation of the concepts of hatred and ignorance in our society, and I highly encourage anyone who hasn't seen or read the play to do so. The rendition done here at UAF was quite impressive. A solid performance by the cast in a pretty difficult play to perform. In the play, each actor plays 8-10 of the residents of Laramie, each with a different personality, opinion and story. In most plays it is difficult to play one person well, but playing 10 is absolutely exhausting for actors. Nevertheless, the performance was quite solid, and was received by very positive reviews in Fairbanks. I would share photos, but of course I don't have any, being that I was only an Usher, not a cast member. Anyway, Thanks for reading, more to come!


National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness week

Hello again, everyone!

I know I'm bombarding you with blogs right now, but I have a lot to share! Two weeks ago was National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week. The goal of this program is to promote awareness of the plight of those living in poverty and in homelessness, and to see what we can do to help. To commemorate this event, two UAF students, Mariah Acton and Anna Dale, organized a weeklong vigil on campus to raise awareness. Mariah is also one of my Student Ambassadors, so I was extra proud of her role in this event. Volunteers stood out in the cold in temperatures down to -20F to raise awareness. The volunteers also raised more than $400 for the Fairbanks Rescue Mission. Throughout the course of the week, I stood with the for somewhere between 3 and 4 hours in the cold. I would have stood more, but my duties called me away. I was also going to volunteer at the rescue mission with the group, but the brakes on my truck went out that day, and that had to take priority :(
The week was a tremendous success. The event was covered in the local media, and it is my hope that we will do this or something very close to it next year again. Thanks for reading!


PS: I will have photos of my participation posted soon!

Musky Oxes!

Hello again, my loyal fans!

This is Joe again, coming atcha with some hardcore awesome stories and photos! I recently got to go on a tour of the Large Animal Research Station here at UAF, and it was awesome. This is one of the only places in the world where people can study and raise Musk Oxen, an endangered species. They are studying their digestion and studying their genetics to see if it would be possible to cross breed the gene in Musk Oxen which enables them to subsist on such difficult to process food into domestic farm animals such as cattle. If they are successful, this could mean the ability to raise cattle on a tenth as much feed as they currently consume, which translate into a tremendous reduction in the price of milk and cow meat! This would also mean a significant boon to the environment, because the cows would then need less grazing land, because they need less food. Pretty cool, huh?

Of course, that's not the only cool research that's going on out at LARS. They also do tons of other research. Overall, it was a very cool visit and a cool experience. If you find yourself in a position to visit LARS, I would highly recommend it. Anyway, thanks for reading, stay tuned for my next post!