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The nuclear engineering department won the 2018 Boo in the Courtyard contest with their Flintstones-themed costumes.

2018 Boo in the Courtyard was a Yabba-dabba-do Home-Run Rock’n’roll Circus


Rainy weather sent the 2018 Boo in the Courtyard into the lobby of the Science and Engineering Research Facility, but Halloween spirits weren’t dampened by the move. Interim Dean Mark Dean presided over the festivities as faculty and staff from four departments competed for the 3D-printed Halloween trophy and the glory of being named “best.”

The contest has evolved over the years to include a presentation to show off each department’s costume theme. The electrical engineers performed a skit inspired by the baseball film “A League of Their Own,” and they lived up to the theme with vintage baseball uniforms, character introductions, and snack vendors. Professor Leon Tolbert did the intros as a 1940s-style radio announcer and communication specialist Kevin Bogle took on the Tom Hanks role.

The leather-clad guitar army of the industrial and systems engineering team rocked the scene with a pantomime to a Guns ’N Roses song. Department Head John Kobza “dueled” with Assistant Professor Anahita Khojandi and then capped their performance off with a classic guitar “smash.” It was an inflatable prop guitar, though, so no one had to worry about debris or splinters.

The circus came to town with the civil and environmental engineering department. Department Head Chris Cox was the ringleader and introduced a bevy of thrilling acts. Their sideshow featured the bearded lady and tattooed lady and two pair of conjoined twins. Their “center ring” starred a strongman, a not-so-tightrope walker, and juggling clowns. The highlight of their show was a lion taming act, performed by Senior Lecturer Jenny Retherford as the tamer and her young daughter as the shyly fierce lion.

The nuclear engineering department roared onto the scene with a “Yabba dabba do.” Department Head Wes Hines did his best Fred Flintstone as he drove a remarkable replica of the modern stone-age family’s car into the lobby. The Flintstone family was joined by assorted prehistoric critters as they proclaimed, “We’re saving the dinosaurs,” a nod to decreased dependency on fossil fuels. They topped off their skit with the delivery of a rack of “Brontosaurus ribs,” an iconic scene from the vintage cartoon show.

Judges from the college’s administrative staff, wearing colored M&M t-shirts, deliberated briefly after the skits and Dean delivered the rankings.

  • First Place: Department of Nuclear Engineering
  • Second Place: Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
  • Third Place: Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

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