Volume 6, Number 3, 1997


In the 'Dream Hour'

A $60 donation to campus radio station WVUD during its spring radiothon fund-raiser entitled givers to a radio "dream hour"-60 minutes of air time to hear their favorite songs.

The idea drew quite a few takers, Chuck Tarver, station manager, says. Here's how it works:

"Generally people come in and select music along with a DJ and introduce their favorite cuts. Most people are enthusiastic about appearing on the air," he says.

"Perhaps the most interesting one was a couple who celebrated their anniversary with a Dream Hour. Another hour scheduled in the future will feature Neal Payne Jr., son of the late Neal Payne, a WVUD Big Band DJ who was killed in an auto accident several years ago," Tarver says.

There also are groups of people who pitch in to host a Dream Hour, Tarver says, like the group of people who camp together at the Philadelphia Folk Festival and call themselves "The Spam Hogs."

WVUD's folk and bluegrass music shows are among the station's most popular, so many of the guest hosts choose an hour of folk music for the Dream Hour, Tarver says. The station can play anywhere from 10-20 songs an hour, depending on length.

"Because many people have work commitments, some choose to send in a list of their favorite tunes for a Dream Hour. Later, they receive a tape of the show," Tarver adds.

WVUD won't host another radiothon until next March, but in the meantime, alums who might like to host a Dream Hour can contact Tarver at the station by calling (302) 831-2701 or by e-mail to Chuck.Tarver@mvs.udel.edu

Unsolved mystery

With his dimples and disarming smile, Stephen P. Ryder, AS '99, looks like the boy next door. It's hard to imagine that the soft-spoken, anthropology major also is a rising star in the field of "Ripperology"-the study of Jack the Ripper.

Actually, the student from Paramus, N.J., is somewhat surprised himself by his sudden fame and acceptance in Ripper circles. He owes it all to a hobby and to the World Wide Web. Fascinated with the world's most notorious, unsolved serial killing since his sophomore year in high school, Ryder was surfing the web for Ripper information last January.

To his surprise, not much was available on the infamous case. Contacting Britain's Mark Dooling, the creator of a Jack the Ripper website game, Ryder asked for some free web space. From it, the "Jack the Ripper Casebook" was born, a hobby that consumes so much of Ryder's money that he has begun to sell reprints of Ripper lore to support the site.

Do his parents worry about his obsession?

"No, but they made me rent my own mailbox. They were getting too much mail from people who read the page," he says.

To join the thousands of people who have accessed Ryder's award-winning page, contact http://ripper.wildnet.co.uk

Dazzling 'Diamonds'

Wearing ponytails and poodle skirts and skating to the music from Grease, members of the Delaware Diamonds Masters Precision Skating Team placed third in the U.S. Precision Figure Skating Nationals, held in Syracuse, N.Y., this spring. The team, with most members aged 35 and above, trains at UD and includes both staff members and alums.

Coached by Wendy McNally-Deppe, ED '89, of Newark, Del., and Linda Martin-Bacon, ED '91, of Bear, Del., the team practices one night a week, with both on- and off-ice sessions.

"It's a little like the Rockettes on ice," team member Elizabeth Garvin, office coordinator for the FOCUS distance learning program in continuing education, explains.

-Jennifer Bevan, AS '97

Best of Newark

Wondering what's hot and what's not at your alma mater? The Review staff told all in its second "Best of Newark" issue. Published May 2, the staff listed everything good about the campus and town from bands to bagels, buildings to burgers.

or instance, with bagel businesses booming and coffee shops cropping up on Main Street, Review staffers find the java tops at Brew Ha Ha! and picked Newark Hot Bagels and Deli as the best bagel borough.

The best pizza, Review staffers say, can be found at Margherita's Restaurante and Pizzeria, citing its variety, inexpensive menu, late night hours and great specials.

For eating on campus, the choice is Kent Dining Hall, with convenient dining hours (open until 8 p.m.), its ambiance and its selection of books and magazines to skim when eating alone. As for the food, Review staffers like the self-serve pasta station, the grill, the salad bar and the make-your-own-waffle stop.

When not eating, Review staffers would like to be living in Brown Hall, on the northwest corner of the Mall. With Main Street on one side, classes nearby and the Trabant University Center across the street...well, as they say, location is everything. A lounge with artworks, chandeliers, antique sofas, gleaming hardwood floors and a fireplace; a basement with games, computers and a weight room; and large 11- by 13-foot bedrooms add to the perks of living in Brown.

Review Managing Editor Matt Manochio, AS '97, says the staff worked hard to hammer out a "best" consensus on more than 40 topics.

This year, The Review's weekly issues became available online at http://www.Review.udel.edu/

Ryan Wilhelm, BE '99, online editor, says he enjoyed feedback from 12-15 alums each week during the academic year.

Not just horsin' around

UD's Equestrian Team wasn't horsin' around when it captured its first national title this spring, winning the Intercollegiate Cup in competition at Mount Holyoke College. It is the only club (non-varsity) team in the nation ever to win the championship.

To get to the national competition, team members had to win in their region and go on to win in the Eastern zone. Of the approximately 45 club members, nine were chosen to participate in the national competition.

Interestingly, in intercollegiate competition, no one knows in advance what horse they will ride.

"You pick a horse in a random drawing the morning of the show," Leanna Boyle, AG '98, co-captain explains. "You have no time to get to know the horse, no time to warm up. It's a true test of horsemanship and ability."

"We competed against 250 schools from all over the country-5,000 riders-to get to and win the championship," she explains.

Boyle, co-captain Kim Fenn, AS '97, and coach Bryan Bradley, who works with club members in his barn near Fair Hill, Md., chose the nine members who participated in the national competition.

Marathon puts Greeks on feet

Greeks were on their feet for 24 hours straight as the Interfraternity Council and the Panhellenic Council combined forces in April for UD's first-ever, all-Greek dance marathon.

The event drew approximately 80 dancers and raised more than $7,200 for The Wellness Community, a Wilmington, Del., organization that provides emotional and psychological support for cancer survivors and their families.

Katie Mosier, BE '97, a member of Alpha Chi Omega, and Jon Rosenbloom, AS '98, a member of Tau Epsilon Phi, organized the marathon. Mosier and friends personally choreographed an original UD line dance to the song, "Knock on Wood," which they estimate was played 58 times in the 24 hours.

Disc jockeys played in seven-hour shifts, and two local bands donated their services for the marathon. Dancers could stand still long enough to eat, but had to stay on their feet for the entire 24 hours. Tasty food-ranging from bagels for breakfast to pizza for late-night snacks-was donated by local vendors.

The event is modeled on an annual dance marathon held at Pennsylvania State University, which this year raised more than $1.5 million dollars for charity.

"Penn State's been doing this for 25 years. This was our first year and we hope there'll be many more," Noel Hart, coordinator of Greek affairs, says.

The wheels on the bus get wet, wet, wet

Fans of the PBS children's television series, The Magic School Bus, are in for an exciting ride when Ms. Frizzle, an irrepressible science teacher, and her intrepid band of students explore the ecology of rocky shorelines in an episode scheduled to air this fall.

With the help of Herbert Waite, UD professor of marine studies, their explorations will take into account the latest scientific research on mussels-one of the primary inhabitants of rocky coasts.

The animated program, based on the Scholastic book series, is in its fourth season. In each episode, Ms. Frizzle's class has a magical adventure aboard the school bus as the students experience scientific concepts firsthand. Their field trips have included tours inside the human body and voyages to outer space.In the episode on tidal zones, the children are transformed into mussels who learn what it takes to survive amid the pounding waves and changing tides found along rocky shorelines.

One adaptation that enables a mussel to withstand the forces of the sea is the "holdfast" that anchors it securely to the rocks. That's where Waite comes in. He has devoted years of research to understanding how a mussel produces its holdfast or byssus.

In a series of what Waite describes as "extensive and intensive" conversations, he provided details to guide the show's animators as they attempted to illustrate the process accurately.

Waite says he found his involvement in the project exciting. "I've tried animating the process of byssus production myself," he says, "and I found that it really illuminates the gaps in our knowledge. I'm looking forward to seeing the results. As far as I know, no one else has done anything like this before."

-Elizabeth Chajes