Ditch Day: May 21

N E W S R E L E A S E For Immediate Release May 21, 2008 For photos, see the 2008 Ditch Day photo album >> Caltech's Ditch Day is Today! PASADENA, Calif.--Ditch Day, that annual day of quirky college pranks and games at the California Institute of Technology, is today. On one fateful day each spring--kept secret until the last minute--Caltech seniors ditch their classes and vanish from campus. Today the rooms of absent seniors are vulnerable to all sorts of mischievous goings-on. The seniors have spent considerable time prior to Ditch Day devising clever, elaborate locks and impenetrable obstacles for their rooms. Underclass students will spend the day trying to penetrate the seniors' rooms through these "stacks," named for the stacks of books and furniture that were used in decades past to barricade the doors. Modern-day stacks can be much more complex than just a physical barricade. They often take the underclass students far away from the room itself on scavenger hunts, adventures, mazes, red-herring searches, and the like. Indoor and outdoor activities take place throughout campus all day. Past stacks have included "The Hobbit," which involved cloak-wearing undergrads traversing a secret passageway and a river (Millikan Pond), "Ocean's Eleven," which retraced the plot of the movie, and included a nasty "gun" battle of water pistols and water balloons, and "Harry Potter Stack," in which students attended the Hogwarts Institute of Technology for the day and took "classes" in potions and spells, then make primordial goo and attempted levitation, all in an effort to break the codes for entry into the seniors' rooms. Many Ditch Day activities have photographic potential for print and broadcast journalists. For this reason Caltech invites the media each year to come to campus and cover the happenings. Media wishing to report on Ditch Day are usually at an advantage by arriving as early as possible, though events will continue throughout the day. The Caltech Media Relations staff at 315 S. Hill Ave. will be available to take media to student activities that have good potential for news coverage. ### Contact: Deborah Williams-Hedges (626) 395-3227 debwms@caltech.edu Kathy Svitil (626) 395-8022 ksvitil@caltech.edu Elisabeth Nadin (626) 395-3631 enadin@caltech.edu Jackie Scahill (626) 395-8733 jscahill@caltech.edu Visit the Caltech Media Relations website at http://pr.caltech.edu/media.