Though the football team may have lost to Amherst in Saturday’s Homecoming game, the defeat didn’t dampen the numerous celebratory events planned by the College’s social organizations this past weekend. The weekend â€“ which sees an influx of alums and visitors every year â€“ passed without severe security- or damage-related incidents.
“As far as Campus Safety and Security is concerned, there appeared to be less damages this year,” said Jean Thorndike, director of Security. According to Thorndike, Security received just one call reporting a rock being thrown through the glass door of the Chemistry building.
Thorndike explained that Homecoming weekend always presents the potential for damages at the College due to the increased number of people on campus. She said that Security typically deals with illegal parties not registered with Campus Life. “If the party or event is unregistered, we try to identify the responsible person [and] then shut down the party,” Thorndike said.
In terms of Homecoming’s social offerings, themed parties and the Neighborhood tailgate competition are always staples of the weekend. This year’s celebration saw the addition of some less traditional events, such as two screenings of the movie The Hangover and a carnival hosted by Williams After Dark.
The carnival, which Currier Neighborhood co-sponsored, took place on the Friday before the game, starting at around 9 p.m. and running till midnight. According to Jerusa Contee ’11, the event was unique to this year and included activities such as stuffing miniature cow mascots, making personalized street signs, posing for professional photographs with the cow mascot and entering a raffle for prizes from Goff’s.
Contee said that she worked with Jessica Gulley, assistant director of student activities for Campus Life, to begin brainstorming for the event in September and really started to solidify plans in early October. “There was a lot of coordination needed in contacting and securing the vendors,” Contee said. “We spent a lot of time deciding on what activities would be the most fun, which was difficult, because so many things sounded cool.”
Though Contee was unsure of the exact numbers of attendees, she estimated that the carnival drew around 300 people. She also noted that within the first hour, there were at least 100 guests.
“We didn’t just get students, we had quite a few recent and older alums stop by as well,” Contee added.
Currier and Dodd Neighborhoods, as well as the Society of Griffins and ACE, organized the bulk of Friday’s party scene, while Spencer and Wood Neighborhoods and the Black Student Union (BSU) covered Saturday’s social schedule.
Sa-Kiera Hudson ’11, president of Currier, worked to organize Friday night’s “Beat Amherst” Party, which was held in Currier Ballroom. Hudson said miscommunications during the planning process ended up taking a toll on attendance, as the event “wasn’t nearly as well-advertised as it should be,” she said. Hudson explained that a lack of planning time and the fact that a lot of students on Dodd’s governance board were quarantined during the planning period served as roadblocks. “We pulled it together at the last minute, but it didn’t go as well as it should have,” Hudson said.
The Griffins organized the “Swag Flu” party, which took place on Friday night in Brooks House and was funded in part by Spencer Neighborhood. During the preceding week, the Griffins sold t-shirts that also had the same H1N1 theme as the party and hosted a banner signing event, in which students signed their respective class banners, to kick-off the weekend. “We wanted to do something new, something that hadn’t been done before,” Griffins member Jamaal Johnson ’12 said, who added that the party drew a significant crowd.
The other main event featured on Friday night was the “Mad Cow” party that All Campus Entertainment (ACE) sponsored in Goodrich Hall.
Currier’s tailgate won the “Best Overall Tailgate” award in the traditional annual Neighborhood tailgate competition. “I think we had the most interesting food,” Hudson said. “Our theme was the one-stop tailgating shop, where you could go for your appetizer, your meal and your dessert.”
Dodd’s tailgate won the “Most Sanitary” award for featuring hand sanitizer and bagged food, along with the honors of “Best Traditional Tailgate” because it included burgers, hot dogs and other typical game-day foods.
The BSU’s “Black Star Affair” was held as a formal event on Saturday night in Goodrich. Decorations for the occasion included black, gold and silver as the theme colors and a red carpet lining the entrance. “Everyone had fun â€“ people were staying after,” Savage said. “Goodrich was packed. We didn’t want to end at two [a.m.], but we had to.”
Chelsey Barrios ’12, Spencer neighborhood social chair, started planning for Saturday’s “Home-Wreckers” party with her co-chair Ivette Stanziola ’12 about a month ago. The party was held in Spencer House and included a DJ and dance party in one room, and food and a keg in another. “We were at capacity, and there was a line at the door,” Barrios said.