By Krissy Harris
The weekend’s chilly temperatures didn’t stop Kedma students from coming out for the TerpZone Takeover on Saturday night.
Over 100 students showed up for the event to enjoy social time with their Jewish community through bowling, pool, air hockey and ice cream.
Kedma is the Orthodox Jewish community at this university, and the TerpZone Takeover is one of Kedma’s many social events hosted throughout the school year.
Kedma Vice President Liana Chesir, a junior marketing and graphic design major, said that most of Kedma’s events take place at Hillel. The TerpZone Takeover is an opportunity for Kedma students to connect socially outside of their usual routine.
“It’s fun to have a Kedma event outside of the Hillel building because it forces people to go outside of their comfort zone. You talk to more people…and you get to do something different, like bowling,” said Chesir.
“It’s nice for it to not be at Hillel, definitely,” said Miriam Charak, an exchange student from Australia studying politics and engineering. “I’m religiously observant. It’s nice that religious observance overlaps with social stuff [through Kedma].”
“It’s a very fun event…Basically Kedma has access to the whole space [of TerpZone]. People who are peripherally involved with Kedma are able to come here and play games,” said Noah Kaplan, a junior aerospace engineering major.
The bowling alley of TerpZone was densely packed with students for most of the event. Groups of students occupied all eight lanes to compete with each other or watch their friends play.
Daphna Wieder, a senior kinesiology major, said she was looking forward to “kicking [her] friend’s butt in bowling.”
“I think [the TerpZone Takeover] is a really special outlet to hang out with friends and have a good time,” she said.
Wieder has been involved with Kedma since she was a freshman at this university. “A lot of my friends brought me and I got really involved in the community,” she said.
Kedma Social Chair Nicole Wohlberg, a junior psychology major, organized TerpZone Takeover.
“I put together the social events. Our first time doing this was last year, and we are going to try and make it a yearly thing. It’s a really fun way for people to get together… it’s also on campus and easy to get to, and everyone loves bowling,” Wohlberg said.
Next to the bowling alley, students challenged each other in pool and air hockey, or convened in groups to socialize. Some groups of students stayed with one activity for most of the event, while others shuffled around from game to game or social group.
Wherever Kedma students were inside of TerpZone, everyone in attendance was engaged with each other, laughing and joking or enjoying friendly conversation. There was a large crowd throughout the entire four hours of the event.
About halfway into the event, ice cream arrived from the Maryland Dairy. Students quickly flocked to the ice cream table to pick up a scoop.
“Ice cream was definitely a huge factor,” said Ariella Wolf, a sophomore mechanical engineering major, describing her interest in coming out for the event. She was also “excited for air hockey.”
“It’s nice that we have these out-of-the-box events. It gives you such a sense of community,” she said.
Wolf added that Kedma was “a big reason why” she chose to come to this university. “I grew up Modern Orthodox…Kedma is the Modern Orthodox group on campus…I wanted to be here for the Jewish community,” she said.
As the event drew to a close, students slowly made their way out of TerpZone.
A few groups stayed until the end to finish up rounds of pool and bowling matches, while others parted ways with hugs or handshakes.