Sunday, May 6, 2012

Spring Fest 2012

I'm about to blog about one of the greatest Mercyhurst experiences I've ever had. 

It was more than 6 months in the making, but Spring Fest 2012 has come and gone. MSG Events Coordinator, Shannon Kissel and I have been working very hard all year planning this classic weekend-long event, and I must say, it was a total success!

One happy Laker from her Walking Taco!
This year Spring Fest was a Cinco de Mayo theme, let me give you a run down of all that went on:

It all began at 8 a.m. on Thursday morning when Shannon, Adam (next year's SAC Chair) and I took a huge van to Sam's Club to buy tons of water, Gatorade, snacks, and dressing room hospitality. After 30 cases of drinks, and the other random things, our 15 passenger van was full!

The fun really began Thursday afternoon when two huge trucks pulled into Mercyhurst University. These two trucks contained all the "magic" for our annual Spring Fest concert. We had tons of volunteers, two MSG executive boards, and two SAC executive boards, plus the production company building the stage, setting the lights, and hooking up sound. It took about four for five hours to set, and everyone was tired and sweaty when we were finished.

Friday afternoon Shannon and I planned a Walking Taco station to give out 300 free "tacos in a bag" to students who walked by in Garvey Park. They were served from a huge yellow Culinary Cab that our dining services, Parkhurst, debuted for the first time that afternoon. If you don't know what a walking taco is, it's a bag of Doritos crushed up topped with taco meat, lettuce, cheese, sour cream, and salsa. They were absolutely delicious and they students loved them!

Friday night was also the concert. Before the concert while students were loading in and between sets we had one of MU's own, DJ b-Lang, spin records for us. He was awesome and got the party going. Then we had a STOMP-like percussion group called Industrial Rhythm perform the opening slot to really pump students up for this year's headliner – Sean Kingston. When Sean Kingston took the stage, it was ridiculous. I don't think I've ever seen a Spring Fest more packed. We gave out 1500 free tickets, and we got over 95% of them back in the doors, and after letting in a few stragglers, we were at maximum capacity. I can't believe we sold out and packed in a full house! During the concert I even got to go on stage and throw out glow-sticks, sombreros, and tshirts.

Sean Kingston performing in our Mercyhurst Athletic Center
When Sean Kingston took the stage, he sang all of the songs that everyone know. These included: Fire Buring, Eenie Meenie, Like a Melody, Beautiful Girls, and Letting Go, just to name a few. He even sang a new track off of the album he is releasing shortly. It's called Back 2 Life, it features TI and Nicki Minaj and it was a hot beat! Also, another special touch was when he got a few girls to come on stage when he sang Beautiful Girls. Not going to lie, I was a little jealous that Mr. Kingston didn't ask me on stage! But that's okay, I did snag a picture with him later – just Shannon, Sean Kingston and me!

Now immediately following the concert, we have to tear down the stage we just built, load it all in the trucks, and send them on their way. This was my third year helping with the stage for Spring Fest and every year, it breaks my heart to build a stage and then rip it down only a few hours later. When everything was said and done Friday night, and the trucks were pulling away, it was about 2:30 in the morning. And we were only half way done with the weekend at the point!

Saturday afternoon was the last portion of the Spring Fest activities. We emptied out a parking lot on campus and held a Cinco de Mayo of our own. It was complete with Erie's own, The Romantic Era, DJ b-Lang for a second day (because he's that great!!!), an inflatable obstacle course, a giant dual lane slip-n-slide, photo booths, air brush tattoos, a sandy candy bar, a caricaturist, Rita's Italian Ice and a full Mexican fiesta buffet. The day activities ran from 1 to 5 p.m. and it was a great flow of students. It was wonderful to see all of these students appreciating and enjoying something that Shannon and I have worked on so hard all year. Though this was my last event (and blog) as the SAC Chair, I am honored to do it all over again next year as MSG Events Coordinator (and blog about that too!). Both the MSG and SAC boards and volunteers surprised Shannon and I with flowers at the end of the weekend, it was too sweet and I really appreciate all of the hard work everyone put into this event for me. From building the stage with our bare hands on Thursday, during the concert and stage break down on Friday, and throughout the day on Saturday, I was truly blessed to have worked with such wonderful people.
Shannon on the left and me on the right after a loooong Spring Fest weekend!

I am so honored that the Mercyhurst community keeps giving me opportunities to do things like this. I get to meet awesome people and work with a fantastic group of students on a day to day basis. I know that so many students across campus, whether they vocalize it or not, enjoy what students like me do. I promise to continue to seize each opportunity that comes my way, to give students the best time on campus as possible. Because to me, this is what it means to be a MU Laker. Carpe Diem!

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