Crimson Nights premieres tonight

By By Trent Lowe

By Trent Lowe

U students will welcome the new school year with a night at the beach.

Crimson Nights, the event put on multiple times a year by the Union Programming Council, opens the Union’s doors Friday night at 9 p.m. for the “Crimson Beach Boardwalk.”

On the first of four Crimson Night events, the party’s organizers hope to bring U students to campus and revitalize campus camaraderie.

“One of our goals for this year is to really give Crimson Nights back to the U students,” said Rob Crosbie, executive director of UPC. “We are hoping to see approximately 6,000 people come through the doors.”

Although Crimson Nights is aimed at providing U students a fun and free event on campus, Crosbie said some U students have been deterred in the past from attending events because of the presence of high school students and other non-U students.

“We want our event to focus primarily on U students and building our own campus community,” Crosbie said.

But their mission isn’t so cut and dry. Crosbie and other organizers realize the unique recruiting tool that they possess with these events. They allow students enrolled in other nearby universities to come along with U students8212;indirectly advertising the U campus.
Organizers expect as many as 1,500 non-U students, generating a projected $7,5008212;at least in part from the $5 entry fee for non-U college students8212;which would help to make a dent in the event’s $12,000 price tag.

About $4,500 of the price tag goes toward operating costs, Crosbie said.

“The operational expenses, although very expensive, are also very necessary,” said Rachel Sellers, director of Crimson Nights. “That money covers fencing the perimeter, first aid, policemen and security, which are all needed to protect all in attendance.”

Next to operating costs, the most expensive attraction is the fireworks, which UPC was able to get at a reduced price.

Recently, UPC has teamed up with various campus groups such as the Student Alumni Board and the International Center to put on the events, but this time around, it’s going solo.

“For this Crimson Nights, we are not specifically collaborating with any one particular group,” Crosbie said. “We have extended an open invitation to all student groups to come table and have a presence at the event, just as we have in the past.”

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