It is no secret that when it rains in Searcy, trekking across Harding’s campus can feel like a courageous act of survival. A light drizzle has the ability to unleash monstrous rivers that rush down the sidewalks and create large bodies of water that block the intersection of the Benson steps and the student center entrance.
Many students do not come prepared for the downpours that occur every spring semester. Junior Daniel Burley, a Searcy local, said the most essential preparation for Arkansas’ inevitable rain is proper footwear.
“Everyone hates wet socks,” Burley said. “My favorite are Doc Martens because they’re comfortable, casual and waterproof.”
Burley said his socks always remain dry when he wears his Dr. Martens. Students can find quality and affordable rain boots at Shoe Department Encore in Searcy. Sophomore Hannah Hackworth said she agrees with Burley about owning proper rain attire. Hackworth said she uses a raincoat, rain boots and an umbrella when walking to her classes. She said she utilizes the buildings as much as possible to keep dry.
“A bad hair day is better than a ruined laptop,” Hackworth said. “I always go through every building … no matter how much longer it takes me.”
“A bad hair day is better than a ruined laptop”
Hackworth said she will walk through every building from the cafeteria to the McInteer building to avoid the rain. Burley said when he walks from the student center to the library, he will cut through the Stevens Art Center. He walks through a small hallway that leads straight through the art building, which he said is a perfect place to get out of the rain. When getting caught unprepared, Burley suggested laughing it off with friends and not being too embarrassed by it.
“Don’t do what I did freshman year and skip class because you got soaked in an unexpected rainstorm after chapel,” Burley said.
Junior Mallory Mackie has also laughed off a few unexpected rainfalls on campus. Unlike Burley and Hackworth, Mackie doesn’t have any alternate routes to keep out of rain on campus. She said she has worn a sweatshirt and shorts in the rain and was not pleased when the rain caught her off guard while exiting the cafeteria. She suggested avoiding Shores Hall if students want to stay dry because of how easily the area floods.
“Don’t live near Shores because it’s a flood down here,” Mackie said. “Avoid sidewalks with dips and stick to high ground.”
“Avoid sidewalks with dips and stick to high ground.”
The easiest way to stay dry on campus is to carry an umbrella, own a raincoat and wear waterproof shoes. Protect any electronics, drive to class if necessary, and walk through buildings when given the chance. According to U.S. Climate Data, the average precipitation for Searcy in March is 4.78 inches, so students should prepare accordingly.
When in doubt, Hackworth advised students to get their priorities straight.
“If you can find anything to protect yourself, protect your backpack and homework first,” Hackworth said.