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family ties in Beloit

From Spokane to Beloit: A story of home, family, and community

Who would have thought that someone from 1,700 miles away could call Beloit “home”? Silas Say, originally from Spokane, Washington, discovered a second home while at Beloit College. After earning his degree in Biology, Health, and Society in 2022, he has returned to Beloit several times to relive his experiences.

Since its founding in 1846, Beloit College has been part of the heart of the community, leaving a lasting impression on students, families, and visitors. Even though moving far away to a new environment is hard, “I chose Beloit College because of the opportunities that I had as a person, student, and an athlete,” Silas explains. “It was life-changing and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.” Silas appreciates Beloit’s strong community, emphasizing the lifelong relationships, memories, and connections that have enriched his experience here. “Beloit is very unique and even in tough times, there’s an underlying presence of unity and motion to continue to grow.”

While pursuing his degree, Silas made the most out of all four years of his college experience. He dedicated his entire college career to playing for the Beloit College Buccaneers Football Team, served as a Student Excellence and Leadership student, and volunteered consistently for four years with the Stateline Boys & Girls Club, alongside numerous other accomplishments and extracurriculars. Despite his packed schedule, Silas managed to find time to explore Beloit.

What Silas found most positive about his experience in Beloit was its distinctive vibe, which he describes as “truly unique in the best way.” Spending four years in Beloit, he discovered that the city was a perfect match for him due to the welcoming community. “The people in Beloit genuinely care about their city, families, and community and the authentic sense of welcome and cultural diversity contribute to making the city incredibly inviting”.

While deeply involved in the community, Silas found it enjoyable to give his family tours of his new home when they visited. Apart from walking around the college campus, Silas liked to take his family downtown for tours. He remembers sharing a dinner at Zen Sushi and admiring the open and interactive setting of the restaurant. Afterward, they would explore the lights, memorials, and art sculptures throughout Beloit, and liked to take walks along the Rock River at sunset. “The way the sun reflects off the river is so peaceful, and catching a pink and purple Midwest sunset is always a treat, they are a one-in-a-million, and making sure they got the chance to see them was a must.” When his younger cousins came to visit, he loved taking them to Riverside Park to play and rent the paddle boats on the lagoon. He recommends that anyone visiting Beloit for family fun should explore downtown to experience the welcoming atmosphere, attend events at Beloit College such as sports, performances, and other activities, and catch a Beloit Sky Carp baseball game at the newly constructed ABC Supply Stadium.

Besides downtown, Silas loved taking his family to other hidden gems around Beloit. Jerry’s CafĂ© topped his list as an all-time favorite, especially when his family came to visit from out of town. According to Silas, “It’s the best joint in town for breakfast and lunch, with great prices and amazing food.” His family always made a point to visit, and Silas continues to stop by whenever he returns to Beloit. When it came to outdoor exploration, his family enjoyed the walking trails tucked away in the city. Their favorite was the Turtle Creek Greenway trail, which offered picturesque views, a quiet atmosphere, and awesome hideouts.

Ultimately, what made Silas enjoy his time here the most was the sense of community. His fondest memories of Beloit’s welcomeness include late-night tacos at Tacos Neno and playing basketball at the park. But above it all, it was the people of Beloit who left the biggest impression. When his family visited, Silas focused more on introducing them to the community than on showcasing specific places. “With so many amazing people in the Beloit community, it was really the people who shaped my experience.”

Silas makes sure to visit Beloit every year since graduation, and each time he arrives, it feels like he is home. He gets a rush of excitement and a sense of calm joy “when he sees Exit One South Beloit off the interstate,” knowing he’s back to see his people and spend time in his home away from home.

To hear more about Silas Say’s experience at Beloit College, view his story here.

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