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The Return of Camelot

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On May 8th, students gathered around the horseshoe to participate in the 100-lap bike racing event called Camelot. An Antioch tradition starting in the 1960’s, bike riders race around the horseshoe while people surrounding them throw “Camelot Juice.” Quinn Ritzhaupt ’23 and Delaney Schlesinger-Devlin ’22 made it possible for Camelot’s return in 2021. The last time the race was staged was in 2018.

Ritzhaupt explains that she worked along with Antioch’s archivist Scott Sanders, “who is always sharing pieces of Antioch history with me. He was instrumental in my research about Camelot.” While learning more about Antioch’s history with Camelot, she found out the clean up process was “pretty nasty, especially in the 90s and early 2000s, which eventually resulted in it being banned from campus.” In order to eliminate this, Ritzhaupt proposed bringing Camelot back with vegan and compostable liquids to throw at the riders.

Bella Wolk ’23, June Wonn ’22, Lola Nelson-Betz ’22, Delaney Schlesinger-Devlin ’22, David Klasovsky ’22, and Jacob Philip ’23 raced around the horseshoe. “Throwers were very enthusiastic, lots of laughs and scheming to see how bad they could make it for the riders … when we ran out of juice, they started throwing leaves, sticks, rocks, and burrs,” says Ritzhaupt.

Video edited by Rosemarie Compton ’24

Even though David did not complete the race, “I wanted to challenge myself and see if I could make it through…my least favorite part was breathing fermented coffee air through my mask.” Despite the turmoil riders had to endure, Bella was the first person to finish the race, along with June, Lola, and Delaney.

Before the event started, Quinn and Delaney fixed the community bikes while also creating hand-printed Camelot shirts to give out. There were other students and alumni who participated in non-physical roles to ensure the success of this event. Zoë Ritzhaupt ’20, Rosemarie Compton ’24, and Ryn McCall ’21 alternated photographing and capturing the event. Liane Tobias ’24 set up the media equipment. Competitive sports are typically not part of Antioch student life activities. However, ” while going through what can be a very isolated time, I feel Camelot was a necessary revival,” says Ritzhaupt.

Written by Anna Robinson ’24, on Co-op Spring Quarter 2021 in the Office of Communications