ORCSA's recipe for summer

Few things are sadder than a rained-out barbecue, but a venue change and a couple of signs promising free food, music, and Frisbees in Hutch Commons allowed ORCSA to prevent calamity. Concerned about the predicted rain, organizers moved the Summer Kick-Off Barbeque from its original Bartlett Quad location. Instead, cooks grilled in Hutch Court and brought food into Hutch Commons.

The downpour never came, but ORCSA’s campus activities coordinator, Dana Bozeman, explained that event planners wanted to avoid seeing “700 people dash inside.” Bozeman didn't mistakenly expect 700 indoor barbeque attendants; soon after the tables were set up students began to congregate and form lines, eyeing the grilled fare. “We’re starting at 12 o’clock,” an ORCSA employee reminded the early arrivers. A college tour came through, and the prospective students seemed more entranced by the trays of hamburgers than by the portraits of former University presidents lining the walls. After the barbeque began, the line for food snaked almost to Mandel Hall's entrance. Guests steadily flowed in for nearly an hour before the rush slowed.

Though the event mainly focused on informing summer students about ORCSA events—a schedule listing film screenings, music, pub nights, and a baseball game was printed on free Frisbees—the crowd that showed up was diverse. Police, maintenance workers, U of C students and employees of all ages, and the occasional bouncing elementary schooler all made their way into Hutch. A DJ nodded along to the beat as he treated the crowd to a set featuring pop, rap, and dance music. The occasional soft Frisbee flew by as plates, and finally tables, emptied throughout the room.

Seth Mayer, '08

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Photos (left to right): ORCSA moved the grills to Hutch Court; crowds flock to the food; a DJ scratches a record in Hutch Commons.

June 29, 2007