Life in Holland as told from my #Instagram


Whether is Big Ol’ Red (aka Holland State Park), Tunnel Beach, Laketown Dunes, The Bowl, or some random beach front you found on a drive, everyone has their favorite beach and it’s a must no matter what time of year. Even in the depths of winter, my friends and I will bundle up in coats and blankets, trek out to some Lake Michigan beachfront, and watch the stars for probably longer than we should.


Riley Trails is cherished around these parts for class field trips, long walks with your ~campus crush~, a place to escape the rush of school, or (my personal fave) an impromptu photo shoot with a couple friends. On a warm, sunny day, there’s really nothing that can beat a good jog up, down, and all around Riley Trails.


Some will say Lemonjellos. Other’s (ME) will say JPs. And still, others will say 205. No matter what your style, vibe, or latte of choice, Holland has got a spot for you. Yes, we may be a town known for churches on every corner. But, this popularity is closely rivaled by our coffee shops on every other corner. Also, pro tip, if you don’t know what to order, try my go-to: an almond milk latte with vanilla, it tastes like how a good book would taste… if you can imagine that.


The Pine Grove is truly the most beloved place on campus. One, I mean come on just look at it, how could you not love this place? But two, this is the heart of campus. On a warm day, the Pine Grove is littered with hammocks, slacklines, picnic blankets, spike-ball courts, and of course, frisbees. The PG is perfect for actually doing homework, pretending to do homework, and just general merriment.


You might say, “but Ariana, what IS Tulip Time“. What is Tulip Time? WHAT IS TULIP TIME?! Only the best time of the year, of course! Right around final exams and graduation a carnival appears in our very own streets to supply Hope students with the proper caloric energy they need to end the year: elephant ears, corn dogs, frozen lemonade, and literally deep-fried-anything-you-can-imagine. Ahhh, the glow of food trucks, the click-clack of wooden clogs on concrete, the omnipresent smell of tulips, there’s nothing else like it.


Hang out around these parts enough and you’ll start to heart it a lot: “What makes Hope special is the community.” BUT IT’S SO TRUE! My favorite place in all of Holland is just wherever my friends happen to be at that moment. If it’s homework at the Bultman Student Center, hitting that free weight room in the Dow, or simply snuggled into our beds, being with my people is being home.

Featured Photographers: Addie Vanderzwaag, Riley Schmitz, Mackenzie Mitchell, Sydney Enloe, Eddie Ip

Featured Models: Riley Schmitz, Jubilee Jackson, Hailey Houck, Sydney Enloe, Anna Stafford,


By: Arianna Bratt

“And the winner of the 2017 Nykerk Cup Competition is…”

Those words will inevitably ring through DeVos Field House in just three short weeks, the night of October 28th to be exact. But, the words that will follow this red-underlined-incomplete-sentence are yet to be fought, rehearsed, sang, played, spoke, and deliberated over. The ultimate question remains: WHO WILL REIGN NYKERK CUP CHAMP? Even? Or Odd? And perhaps the even more interesting question: Where do your alliances lie?

Nykerk is a cutthroat (okay, not really, more like very loving and cuddly #NykerkLove) tradition at Hope College in which the freshman, coached by the juniors, and the sophomores, coached by the seniors, clash to create the most epic battleground ever laid for all things song, play, and oration. Let’s break it down and introduce our Nykerk warriors. *cue the drumroll*

The Orator: One oration wizard is chosen from each side to craft a heart-piercing verbal and physical articulation of the theme. Given a different prompt every year, the wisdom spewed from our orators are guaranteed to leave you a tingling combination of elated and teary-eyed.

The Play: 15 Odd Year and 10 Even Year play girls are destined to take the stage in original and hilarious plays riddled with Hope jokes, crazy makeup, intricate traditions, and outrageous plots. This is unlike any other play you’ve seen (no, but really…think crazy and then even crazier). Play will leave you in shock, awe, admiration, albeit slightly confused, but wanting to see it all over again.

The Song: Our song girls come with strong belting voices and in masses. Dazzling harmonies are met with captivating hand motions and prop use. Their impeccable timing pulls you into a never-before-experienced world of popular music and old classics. Get ready to incessantly and uncontrollably dance in your seat.

The Morale: Our ever-vital morale men are the stoke to the Nykerk flame. They cheer our girls on with daily skits and constant hilarity. On the night of Nykerk you will see them running around gladly bearing their servant’s heart, empowering all things ‘Kerk to ensue. (We love you, moral boys, oh yes we do)

As Even and Odd bring their best, the judges and the audience have the impossible task of choosing a winner year after year. So, where do your alliances lie? As a former Odd Year playgirl, I’m sure you can only imagine my preferences. My freshman year, I played the part of Puller (pictured below) a tribute to Nykerk’s counterpart – the Pull. And then my sophomore year, I played Train a clunky but loveable take on the trains that make Hope students constantly late to class. I have truly made some of my best friends during Play, in fact, 5 of us are living together our Senior Year! Yes, we are anticipating to never sleep #PlaySoHard

Alas, I am not here to sway you. Rather, choose for yourself and go root on your precious Nykerk girls with all the energy and love your heart can muster. October 28th at DeVos Field House, don’t miss it!