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14 things UMW freshmen should know about Fredericksburg and campus

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(editor’s note: some of these we totally just made up.)

So … mom and dad are gone and that moment you’ve dreamed about has finally arrived. You’re in charge. Before you get started, we wanted to share a few tidbits you might find helpful …

1. Just about everyone in Fredericksburg is happy to have you here. You add life and energy and possibility to our city.

It’s true! It’s true. You … are … in

2. Dogs pee in the fountain.

Let’s be real. At some point, if you haven’t already, you’re going to jump into that fountain. Maybe more than once. Just a heads-up that it’s a popular summertime “dog bath” spot for area residents.

3. Every other house in College Heights is occupied by a super-secret undercover police officer who won’t hesitate to arrest you, toss you in the drunk tank with a scary guy from Spotsylvania and call your mom. Happens every year. Be good.

They’re watching you. (Yes, you.)

4. The bell tower does not actually ring by itself. A guy named Earl lives up there, watches over the campus and hits that bell “just so” at the appropriate hours. (Think “Hugo,” but sort of creepy.)

His name is Earl.

5. Your university used to be a college. Seriously, it was a COLLEGE.

At one point, dropping “Mary Washington” from the school’s name was under consideration. You know how that turned out.

6. Last year, some freshmen were wandering around a residential street near campus looking for a random party somebody thought she saw mentioned on Facebook. It was late, and they were carrying on just a little too loudly. Their parents were called, and no one has seen them since.

7. If you join C.O.A.R. (Community Outreach and Resources) and participate in the amazing things they do for this community, Fredericksburg will love you forever.

8. The Frawley crawl isn’t real. No one actually does that. It’s just an ugly rumor.

9. President Hurley can dance. No, really, he can DANCE!

What? You didn’t believe us?

10. Your freshman year will go by in a flash, but the Internet is here forever. (It is, right?) Don’t make Natatia Bledsoe write about you.

11. Eagle Village used to be a discount store called Roses where you could buy really cheap stuff you probably didn’t need.

12. Great Hall has played host to both Bill Clinton and Beck. (Bill Clinton was more crowded.)

Hillary still lost the primary to Obama (you knew that, right?), but Bubba was, in fact, in the ‘Burg.

13. There are exactly 34,211 bricks on Campus Walk. Yeah, we counted.

14. In four years, if all goes well, you will walk across those bricks as a procession of bagpipes leads you into Ball Circle. You will listen to a bunch of speeches and we will take your picture and celebrate the awesomeness that is you, a 2017 graduate of the University of Mary Washington.

Welcome to Fredericksburg, and good luck!