Letting it all go: The Flying Lions Adventure Club takes students to new heights

Just when you thought that there was nothing exciting to do around campus, the Flying Lions Adventure Club sweeps down from the sky to the rescue. You’ve seen the fliers advertising their skydiving exploits. The ones that read, “Worst case scenario: You don’t have to take finals.”

Angela Del Vecchio, president of the Flying Lions, founded the club last spring semester in hopes of giving students the chance to do something new and different while at college.

“Since my freshman year, I’ve been looking for things to do around campus,” Del Vecchio said. “I wanted to start a skydiving club, but realized that might be too expensive and decided to start an open adventure club my sophomore year,” she said.

While a main feature of the club is skydiving, members have enjoyed various activities over the past year. Some of the adventures the group has participated in have been white-water rafting and skiing. The group has also tried indoor rock climbing, survival camping, rope courses and hiking.

Another one of the club’s endeavors is “adventure racing.” According to Del Vecchio, these races involve different physical demands, such as running, mountain bike racing and other extreme activities.

Hara Hawthorne, Flying Lions treasurer, joined the club last year with her friends after hearing about the skydiving trip. Since then, she believes that the club has given her the opportunity to participate in many different off-campus activities.

“The club is a great outlet, especially with the stress of tests and classes,” Hawthorne said. “It gives you the chance to do something that maybe you’ve never done before or will never be able to do in the future.” Hawthorne also said the Flying Lions always have some sort of event planned and members of the club are always active.

This year, the Flying Lions will be going on their second annual skydiving trip on April 26. Del Vecchio, who has skydived in the past, decided on the activity because she thought it would be something many college students would enjoy.

“I had been skydiving before and lots of my friends wanted to do it, so I figured lots of College students would want to jump out of a plane,” Del Vecchio said.

According to Hawthorne, the timing for the skydiving trip was chosen strategically with finals right around the corner.

“Skydiving is probably one of our biggest events of the year,” Hawthrone said. “Because finals are so close, a lot of people are like ‘I might as well jump out of a plane.'”

Aubrey Wechsler, freshman open options major, is one of the many students who will be taking the big plunge later this month.

“I think every person secretly wants to fly,” Weschler said. “It’s something that I’ve always wanted to do. To be honest, I’m not really a big heights person and I think facing my fear will be part of the rush and excitement.”

Wechsler believes that the anticipation of this trip is helping her to deal with end of the semester stress.

“It’s giving me something to look forward to since I’ve had so much work to do,” Wechsler said.

Since it is not mandatory for someone to be a member of the Flying Lions Adventure Club to participate in the group’s activities, the list of members for the group is a short one.

“We have about 300 people on our mailing list, but only about 25 active members,” Del Vecchio said.

The Flying Lions are always looking for new members and, according to Hawthorne, anyone interested in off-campus adventures should contact the group at flyinglionsadventureclub@hotmail.com and start going to the group’s meetings.

“This is a great club because of the adventures we go on, but the more members we have, the more memorable our experiences will be,” Del Vecchio said.