Wesleyan students, caked in mud, sloshed through oatmeal and slipped on whipped cream Tuesday evening as they competed in the Wacky Wesleyan Olympics, capping a day’s worth of orientation-style activities known as Ram Camp.

Hosted by Student Life, Ram Camp operated as a meet-and-greet workshop aimed at building new relationships and teaching effective communication skills to first-time and transfer  students. About 150 students gathered at 8:30 a.m. in the gym of the Student Union Building for the all day event before spilling onto the grounds around Stella Russell Residence Hall 10 hours later for the games.

“Ram Camp is probably one of the most important activities that any new student to this college and university can get involved with,” said Michael Chaney, coordinator of student activities, volunteerism and organizations.

Besides learning basic first-time student information such as where important classroom and student resource buildings are located, Chaney said Ram Camp gave students the opportunity to engage with peers they will be surrounded by until the end of the semester.

Chaney said the Wacky Wesleyan Olympics were created by the camp counselors, which consisted of Wesleyan upperclassmen, as an interactive and messy way to finish the day. Students were divided into multiple teams and designed their own flag before pulling each other through a mud pit in a tug-of-war and bobbing for small plastic toys in a kiddie pool overflowing with oatmeal. A relay egg toss and Twister game, slathered in whipped cream, rounded out the events.

“You know the thing you always remember from an event is always the last thing,” said counselor Daniel Baldwin, accounting junior. “We wanted to put the best thing at the end.”

Baldwin said the games were chosen sporadically with the sole intention of getting the new students to open up to one another. After the plan for a mud tug-of-war was hatched, he and the other counselors built the mud pit a week prior to Ram Camp. Student Life plans to use the pit throughout the semester for other activities such as mud volleyball, he said.

For some students, the mud pit made a lasting impression.

Biology freshman Tyler Linderman said although he made new friends during Ram Camp and benefited from the team building exercises, his favorite part of the day was the tug-of-war in the mud pit.

Welcome activities sponsored by Student Life (817.531.4872) and Residential Living (817.413.5000) will continue throughout the remainder of this week and the next. Check back for a complete list of events and their details.

Updated list of upcoming events:

Monday, Aug. 27  9PM
Really Awesome Movie Night “The Hunger Games”
McFadden Lecture Hall
Free Popcorn

Tuesday Aug. 28  3:30PM-6:30PM
Slip into Ram Life
Behind Library, in front of Dora’s Cafe
100ft Slip and Slide plus more “fun in the sun” activities

Tuesday Aug. 28 6:45 p.m.
Rampage Volleyball Game vs SAGU
Sports Court

Wednesday 8/29 6:00PM-9:00 p.m.
Winning Wednesday
Mall Area
Boot camp obstacle course, human zorb wrecking ball, night of fun and games, prizes

Thursday Aug. 30  4:30PM-6:00 p.m.
President’s Picnic
Gym in SUB
Meet all campus organizations on campus, free food

Friday Aug. 31 7:00PM-11:00 p.m.
Casino Night
The SUB
Play your luck, win flat screens, fridges and more