Bruins who arrived on campus early on the morning of January 15, 1932, were surprised to find that UCLA had been unexpectedly blanketed with snow. Two inches of cottony fluff covered the Royce Quad and patches of white iced the tops of the surrounding redbrick buildings, shrubs and trees. As snowball fights and snowman building ensued, some professors officially dismissed class and joined in on the fun. Others tried to maintain a semblance of order, but their efforts were met with exuberant resistance.
Despite all the shenanigans, the administration was understanding since this was the first time in history that it had snowed on campus. The snowball showdown went on for three hours until around 11 a.m., when the sun came out and melted most of the snow — and normal campus life resumed. A handful of images survive as evidence of this truly rare occurrence. It did not happen again until January 1949.