The origins of Spring BreakMonday Mar 08, 2010
March is the time of year when your Winter depression is beginning to lift with the fond and familiar sound of the phrase “Spring Break”
Did you ever wonder how Spring Break came about in the first place? Why do you automatically think of sun, sand, and, if you’re of age, a cocktail or two? The origination of Spring Break actually dates back to 1936 to Colgate University in New York and the University’s swimming coach, Sam Ingram. On one spring break, Mr. Ingram, took his swim team down to Fort Lauderdale to Florida’s first Olympic sized swimming pool, the Casino Pool, for his team to train. The ever vigilant marketing minds of the time realized a great opportunity here to help the budding economy of Fort Lauderdale, it would seem. By 1938, the Casino Pool had a College Coaches’ Swim Forum where over 300 swimmers participated.
Jump a head a decade or two, because really, who wants to read that much right now? By the 1960’s, the practice of college students heading to Florida on their spring breaks continued. I guess when, in 1961, a spring break movie is released by Hollywood starring George Hamilton (so that’s why he’s still so tan?) a cultural phenomenon is really going to gain momentum. Then, throw in TIME magazine's coverage and you have a lot of exposure. On top of that add in tons of students in Florida. Tons of students in one location leads to some not so welcome debauchery from time to time, we’ve all been there. Fort Lauderdale specifically decided to ask students to stay away and passed laws on public decency and on drinking in public.
Once students stopped going to Fort Lauderdale, they found alternative locations, including Mexico and the Caribbean. Of course MTV got involved and made the current idea of Spring Break way more popular and then you have what we have today. Now, we have Spring Break Panama City Beach, Spring Break Bahamas, Spring Break Acapulco, Spring Break Cancun and many more places to enjoy a quick week of release from the college grind.
Now, you have to decide between the traditional spring break or an alternative spring break your mom is probably asking you to consider.
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