The Return of In-Person Crimson Nights, Crimson Quest and More


Jose Alex Garcia

(Graphic by Jose Alex Garcia | The Daily Utah Chronicle)

By Lizzy Seitz, News Writer


University of Utah freshmen of both fall 2020 and 2021 were acquainted with their campus over Zoom. With the hope of COVID-19 case numbers going down and vaccine numbers going up, the U has announced that fall 2021 will have in-person classes, as well as the return of events such as Crimson Nights and more.

Ashlee Christofferson, assistant director of programming at the Union and advisor for the Union Programming Council, was excited to talk about all the future events coming up this fall, such as Welcome Week Tabling, Crimson Quest, Crimson Nights and the Freshman Ambassador Board.

To kick off the fall semester, there will be Welcome Week Tabling from Monday, Aug. 23 through Friday, Aug. 27 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Union Plaza.

The second annual Crimson Quest will be taking place from Aug. 23 through Aug. 27. Kyra Hirasuna, director of Crimson Nights, said this event is a good way for freshmen to get to know their way around campus and enjoy the various prizes offered. U students can participate either by themselves or with a team, as well as on or off campus, choosing from over 100 different activities.

The first Crimson Night will be on Aug. 27 from 6 to 10 p.m. outside of the Union. Crimson Nights are one of the U’s largest nighttime events. Occurring twice every semester, this school-wide party has food, soda, a dance party and other activities related to the unique theme.

It will be held in person with online options for those who need it, according to Hirasuna.

Hirasuna also made sure to mention that the Union Programming Council is keeping up with the U’s COVID-19 safety guidelines. One change from previous years is that only U students will be allowed to attend Crimson Nights. Christofferson said everyone is excited to be back in person and the programming will reflect that.

She also mentioned there are a few potential challenges with these events returning in-person. Christofferson said students should be flexible and prepared with a backup plan if these events need to be held virtually at the last minute. One potential problem is with student leaders who only have experience doing online versions of events and have never dealt with running in-person events.

“I think after a year of being online people will probably be letting loose a little bit more at events so we may have some challenges that way, but there’s also the excitement of people wanting to come to in-person events,” Christofferson said.

Hirasuna pointed out that if freshmen are looking to get involved this fall, the best way to do so is by applying to the Freshmen Ambassador Board. According to Sydney Larsen, the director of community service with Union programming, applications are due by Sept. 10 through the Union website. Larsen explained that this is an introductory board for freshmen. More information can be found on the Union website or by talking to Union staff.

Both Hirasuna and Larsen stated how excited they were to see and meet people. Larsen said she is especially excited to see people’s faces, in part because virtual learning allowed students to turn their cameras off and not show their faces in class.

Larsen also mentioned that there are community events throughout the year, such as a blood drive in September, Family Fright Fest in October and the Oktoberfest Celebration, all with specific dates to be announced in the near future.

Christofferson made sure to explain that while all events are in person, all of them will have virtual components for those who may not feel comfortable or cannot come to campus. She also said the Zoom Cooking Hours will continue throughout the year as the Union partners with the U food pantry.

Hirasuna said the best place to find information about upcoming Union events is the updated posts on the Instagram page @yourcampuslife, the posters hanging in the Union and the Campus Connect website.

Christofferson said, in the Union, people should check the bathroom for their Toilet Paper Newsletter, found hanging on the back of the doors. She also mentioned that YourCampusLife is active on Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat for updates on future events.

“There’s a certain energy on campus that I’ve been missing,” Christoffeson said. “I’m excited to see everyone in person, to program in person, especially since Zoom can be exhausting. It will be exciting to be back in person.”


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