October 30, 2003  
Volume 97, Issue 34  

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Beach ceremony as construction goes on

By Laura Katsirdakis
Gazette Staff

Ian Howes/Gazette
OH, THE POOR BABY GOT CAKE ON HIS FACE. At least it’s not vagina cake. Second-year health sciences student Ashley Hogue wipes fourth-year bio-physics student Blake Moran’s face during the Concrete Beach celebration yesterday... on, the Concrete Beach.

This is definitely a good week for free cake on campus.

A crowd mingled on the Concrete Beach yesterday, warming their hands with coffee cups and waiting for the festivities to begin - and as they chatted, construction workers were busy laying bricks.

University Students' Council President Paul Yeoman began by welcoming the crowd to the official grand opening of the Concrete Beach. The old Beach, he said, was in a sad state of affairs, not having been renovated since the '70s. "[The new Beach] is a wonderful addition to campus," he said.

Yeoman talked about some of the features of the new Beach: the pavilion wired for light and sound, new trees and shrubbery, new seating and the awning covering the stairs to the lower part of the University Community Centre [affectionately known as "the Purple Sombrero"].

"It is a tribute to the relationship that exists between the university administration and the Students' Council," Yeoman said.

"[The new Beach was created] first and foremost because the old Beach leaked," said Paul Davenport, Western's president. "Another important reason [for the new Beach] is that Western aspires to be the premier residential university in Canada," he said, adding enhancing the experience of students outside of the classroom is also a priority.

Davenport referred to the recent Globe and Mail University Report Card as proof of the superior aesthetic appeal of Western's campus.

He also offered special thanks to the physical plant department for their work on the new Beach and congratulated the winners of the awards handed out during the latter half of the ceremony.

One-hundred and twenty-five awards were handed out to students, professors and support staff for excellence in six different categories: innovation, athletics, academics, student leadership, volunteerism and community building, said USC VP-campus issues Adrienne Kennedy.

"Thank you for your continued devotion to making a difference," Yeoman said to the award winners.

"I'm getting an award for volunteerism - I knew about the awards but wasn't expecting to be nominated," said David Major, a fourth-year history and political science student.

Yeoman also presented a plaque that will adorn the Beach. He and Davenport jointly cut the purple ribbon and the celebratory cake. In the background, the clinking of construction work went on.

"This is kind of weird; they usually have the grand opening after all the work is done," said construction worker Tom Comrie, who was on the job while the ceremony was taking place.



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