This week students at Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s East Campus residence hall have been constructing DIY carnival rides.
A plywood track for wooden handcarts circles around the courtyard between the buildings at 3 Ames St. in Cambridge. There’s a wooden Ferris wheel, a two-level “fort” (basically a deck for hanging out, including a net for lounging in), and a “space trainer.” Nearby a makeshift plywood sign advises: “Be Safe Don’t Die!”
Since 2004, when students constructed a fully functioning roller coaster in the courtyard, the residence hall has used the DIY carnival to welcome/attract first-year students to Residential Exploration (REX) week, the time when students are invited to visit various dorms on the way to choosing where they want to live on campus.
Each year the construction is temporary. Expect it to disappear after about a week.
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