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MIT staff blogger Matt McGann '00

More Updates from Cambridge by Matt McGann '00

It's CPW 24/7 here. We can't wait to see you.

I’ve had fewer strange dreams lately, but the pace is still frantic here as we prepare for nearly two-thirds of the admitted class of 2011 to descend upon the MIT campus…

CPW Events

Wow, there are a lot of cool things going on. Here are a few that caught my eye in the CPW schedule:

  • Late night classes called Firehose, starting at 11pm Thursday night, going until 9am Friday. Black holes, quantum computing, neuroscience, and more, taught in a fun/crazy style by MIT students.
  • Awesome music at ZBT’s Battle of the Bands at 8pm Saturday, with special guests Ben & Marilee.
  • Be a live DJ on WMBR 88.1. Sign up at their booth at the Activities Fair Saturday at 1pm, then take a 30-minute slot on the air later that evening.
  • The famous Bouncy Ball Drop at Senior House, Friday night at 8. Must be seen to be believed.
  • Two independently conceived Mooninite events [background info], one by East Campus Friday at 5pm, one at Random Saturday afternoon at 4:30.
  • Lecture by Senator Ted Kennedy on Friday at 2:30pm. Whether or not you agree with his politics, he’s clearly one of the most important political figures of this era.
  • A talk by former pro wrestler and WWE Champion Mick Foley (a.k.a. Mankind, a.k.a. Cactus Jack, a.k.a. Dude Love), one of the most intriguing personalities in entertainment. Thursday at 5pm.
  • An open house and presentation of new undergraduate curricula in Course VI (Electrical Engineering and Computer Science); I know the EECS faculty are excited to talk to students at this event. Friday at 3:30pm.
  • Student projects on display at the Appropriate Technology & Sustainable Development Fair, Thursday at 6pm.
  • The appropriately-named Cool Projects Open House Friday at 4pm. The solar car team will be there, the Formula SAE race team, the Mars Gravity Biosatellite, the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Team…
  • The Gap Year Panel (which includes both myself & Anthony, among others), Friday at noon. If you’d consider talking a year off between high school and MIT, come to this discussion.

For those who can’t make it…

Don’t worry too much if you can’t be here for CPW — we’re looking out for you. There will be lots of blog coverage and other stuff on the web chronicling the weekend’s events. Also, you can still visit the campus later in the month via the Overnight Program (details in your MyMIT portal) — the weather will probably be better! There are also lots of interesting events and concerts, academic expos, theater productions, and much more. If you’ll be visiting during a quiet week after CPW, drop us a note and stop by to say hello!

Opening Day at Fenway Park

Today was the first home game for the Boston Red Sox, which the Sox won 14-3. Fenway is a pretty short walk from MIT, about 15 minutes or so. One of our student workers, Monica ’08, actually was at the game today (nice!). Some of MIT’s living groups, including Monica’s, are so close to Fenway that you can hear the PA system. I had a pretty sweet view of Fenway from my Baker House dorm room my freshman, junior and senior years.

To celebrate Opening Day, here’s an awesome photo of Fenway Park using the Photoshop tilt-shift technique (courtesy B Tal via Bostonist).

CPW tips & tricks

Read Bryan’s latest entry.

Don’t forget the details

If you haven’t yet turned 18 and you’re coming to CPW, please remember to fax in your Medical Release Form ASAP. The form came in your March mailing with the other CPW materials, and is also available on the website as a PDF. You can fax it to 617-253-4076. If we don’t get it, you’ll have to get your p[arents to sign it and fax it to us at registration, which can be a big pain.

Notes for those driving in

I’ve been living in Boston for 11 years now, and I don’t own a car, and for good reason. Getting around on foot or via public transportation in Boston/Cambridge is extremely easy and efficient. I use the subway, which is safe and chief, every day.

Driving, on the other hand, can be extremely trying. Lots of one-way streets, very little parking, traffic. Many parents I talk to at CPW Registration who aren’t used to driving in Boston (or a similar city, like San Francisco or New York) are quite frustrated. I write this to warn you a bit, and to encourage you to plan ahead.

Parking on or near campus is really hard. There are very few parking spaces available for visitors during the day on Thursday and Friday (evenings and weekends are usually somewhat better). We recommend that you park at your hotel and make your way to campus from there. Please note that we can’t provide transportation to or from your hotel — call them and figure out your best way to get to MIT on public transportation.

Most of you will drive to MIT on the Massachusetts Turnpike (Interstate 90). To get to the drop-off point from “the Pike,” follow I-90 east to the Cambridge/Brighton exit (exit 18). After paying the toll, follow the signs to Cambridge. Proceed through the stoplights at the intersection. You will cross the Charles River via the River Street Bridge. Continue straight on River Street for about 7/10 mile to Central Square (the next major intersection). Turn right onto Massachusetts Avenue and follow Massachusetts Avenue for about 7/10 mile. After you cross the railroad tracks, you will be looking at MIT – the Great Dome and academic facilities are on the left, the dormitories and athletic facilities are on the right. Make a right at the third stoplight after the railroad tracks; the drop-off point is ahead on your right.


Over on the Random Hall blog, they’re getting ready for your arrival.

Bad Weather!

The weather forecast isn’t looking good for CPW. The National Weather Service says there’s a 100% chance of precipitation on Thursday, and that it’s likely to be a mix or rain, sleet, and snow. It is fairly unusual to get snow this far into Spring, but that’s what we’re looking at. It’s also going to be unseasonably cold.

So, as you’re packing, be sure to bring warm clothes and rain gear. Of course, you can always buy a cool MIT hoodie when you get here. Luckily, much of MIT’s campus is connected, so you’ll be able to avoid some of the weather. And, it should be nice Friday night and Saturday (hopefully!).


So, what event are you most excited for at CPW?

19 responses to “More Updates from Cambridge”


  2. Pall K says:

    Is “all of it” an acceptable response?

    I love cars, so the Red Bull racing vehicle display on Saturday.

  3. Mandah '11 says:

    Hah. Well, specifically, I’m going to the three advanced music recitals (flute and 2 piano), every a cappella and Musical Theater event, movie marathons till 6 in the morning, learning about the brain and cognitive sciences from 4 – 9 AM, eating tons of pizza, chocolate, ice cream, and Pina Coladas (virgin, of course), and capture the flag. Underground.

    *sigh* There’s just so much more. I have 11 pages of stuff I’m going to do. In 8pt font. DID I MENTION I’M SO EXCITED.


  4. Bianca '11 says:

    I can’t wait for liquid nitrogen ice cream, chocolate truffle making classes, dîner à la
    maison française, cult movie marathons, and of course the foam party. I really need to see that with my own eyes.

  5. Fangfei says:

    Meet the Bloggers!
    Among other things. =D
    I think I’ll do everything on the spur of the moment. The current event list is overwhelming!

  6. Jillian says:

    Underground midnight capture the flag.

    And the bouncy ball drop.

  7. Maia '11 says:

    Bouncy ball drop!!!!!

    And shopping cart jousting.

    And like 8 million barbecues.

  8. bon says:

    I’ve only looked through thurs so far but definately midnight frisbee. There is so much going on I’m psyched!!!!! I’m thinking no sleep for the next five days is not a bad idea

  9. bon says:

    by the way speaking of strange weather: It snowed in Texas… the day before Easter. Tomorrow the high is in the mid-80s. MA will be a snap compared to this confusing TX weather. I had a snow ball fight on saturday and the is a possibility for another tomorrow yay!!!

  10. Kristin '11 says:

    I am really excited for Pants Pants Revolution, personally….and the game of Capture the Flag in the Infinite!! SO AWESOME.

  11. Snively says:

    Pants Pants Revolution
    Play in(with) Liquid Nitrogen
    Shopping Cart Jousting
    Underground Capture the Flag
    The BBQ where they cook every type of animal ever
    Exclamation Mark !!!!!!!! (!!!!!) ! ! ! !
    Meet the Bloggers
    Battle of the Bands

  12. Snively says:

    I love that Barkowitz got first post, I lawl’d.

  13. My top 3 (in no particular order):

    1. Dinnertime Sampler show with Peach and (hmm) me, Thursday 6:00 – 7:00 pm.

    2. Meet the Bloggers Event, Friday night, 8:30 – 10:00 pm.

    3. Saturday night Battle of the Bands, 8:00 – 11:00 pm.

    4. My presentation Friday at 3:00 – 4:00 pm on Financial Aid.

    5. Meeting with Freshmen students/families every 1/2 hour all day Thursday / Friday / Saturday (9:00 am – 5:00 pm)!!

  14. Mandah '11 says:

    So, after going through 74 pages of activities (man, that took a long time) I managed to circle everything I REALLY wanted to do. I then made a Word file with all of it in order.

    Man…there just aren’t enough hours in the day. I’m never going to sleep.

    This is going to be so awesome.

  15. Oops did I say 3?

    Actually I forgot the acapella singing, the opening ceremony, everything.

    I’ll shut up now.

  16. Jon says:

    Snively its probably part of the campaign for the Big Screw hahaha

    and the Fenway pic is ridiculous, thats going to be one of my main objectives upon being a Bostonian, become a RedSox fan. which can be done as a Mets fan, out of sheer hatred for the Yankees

  17. Drew '11 says:

    In no particular order:
    <li>Paranoia XP at Midnight</li>
    <li>The “Firehose” Sessions</li>
    <li>”Meet the Bloggers”</li>
    <li>Any video-game party that has “guitar hero”!</li>
    <li>SIPB informational meeting</li>
    <li>Pants Pants Revolution / DDR Tetris</li>

  18. Mandah '11 says:

    Drew…DEFINITELY agree with you on “any video-game parrty that has guitar hero.” We’ll be seeing each other. A LOT. Hahahaha. smilesmile:)

    WHOAMG. Excited. Must keep packing.


  19. Megan says:

    and the Fenway pic is ridiculous, thats going to be one of my main objectives upon being a Bostonian, become a RedSox fan. which can be done as a Mets fan, out of sheer hatred for the Yankees