TAB, RHA Partner to give students a break

A student enjoys the Velcro wall during RaiderFest.

Hundreds of Tech students waited in a line stretching from the rec fields back to the Robert H. Ewalt recreation center for a chance to enjoy live concert performances, free food, inflatables, giveaways, self-portraits and henna art, which was provided by the Texas Tech Residence Hall Association and the Tech Activities Board.

TAB partnered with RHA to host RaiderFest Friday evening on the rec fields next to Urbanovsky Park, providing students with an alternative campus experience geared at refreshing students before final exams.

Stormi Smith, vice president of campus traditions and leadership development for RHA, said this is the second year RHA and TAB has partnered to host RaiderFest for Tech students.

“We’ve actually started our planning last semester for this,” she said. “We started in about November. It takes a lot because we have to put in a lot of [purchase orders] and get everything approved to make sure that it’s safe for students and that it’s going to be the best fit for students here.”

Smith said TAB and RHA was in charge of many students money and the organizations had to find the best way to spend it in a manner those students would enjoy and appreciate.

“There’s something here for everybody,” she said. “I’m extraordinarily happy with the turnout, within an hour we were actually out of shirts.”

Students were granted free entrance to the event with a Tech student identification card and also received a free t-shirt upon entering the event.

Students gathered at the RaiderFest event also to enjoy The Almost live in concert. TAB concerts coordinator Kandace Austin was responsible for communicating with agents for the band.

Austin said planning the event was an invaluable experience for her career and although it did bring stress, the outcome of the event was a positive one.

“I love event planning so it’s kind of like a dream come true that I’m going to plan something like this,” she said. “I’ve had so much fun doing it, it’s very, very stressful but when you get here to the event, I’m just overwhelmed with happiness.”

Lisadela Garza, a senior Spanish major from Lubbock, said she decided it was best to get VIP passes for her friends before attending the event to avoid potential lines.

The passes allowed users to skip all lines at the event, including entrance, food and activity lines. Students were asked to fill out a waiver in order to be granted the passes.

Austin said the band was chosen by a survey, which she conducted outside of the Student Union Building. Austin provided students with a list of potential bands and students selected the group they were most interested in.

“It’s hard to get a band to attract a diverse crowd and that’s one thing we have to go through when we are picking a band,” she said. “The Almost won the survey — so really, they’ve done all of the work.”

Jonathan O’Hara, junior petroleum engineering major from Dallas, said he was impressed by the diversity of the crowd in attendance at the RaiderFest event.

“It’s not a lot of frat people,” O’Hara said of the RaiderFest crowd. “It’s more like the other people you don’t see around a lot. It’s interesting.”

About Michael Dupont
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