Club & Greek

It’s the Great Pumpkin, RHA!

RHA Hosts Annual Fall Fest Outside in the Quad


The residence quad was littered with pumpkins Wednesday night, October 17, for the Residence Hall Association’s (RHA) second annual Fall Fest. At 6 pm, over 300 students on campus began to search throughout the hundreds of pumpkins for one to take back to the dorms.

Tony Conard, co-advisor for RHA and area coordinator was pleased with the event. “It is completely free and for all students on-campus. It’s a little holiday fall festive fun.” Conard watched from the fire pits as students ran through the pumpkins and snatched them up. “All of the pumpkins will be gone probably within an hour and a half,” he stated. “It’s first come, first serve and they go real fast. It’s a great event and RHA is really proud of it.”

Alissa Catalano, senior and business major, explained, “This is the second annual Fall Fest, but the third annual pumpkin picking. We have over 300 pumpkins that people can choose from and paint. We also have new things such as making your own candy apples which is really cool, s’mores, and a psychic reading tarot cards.” Catalano, Vice President of special events and programming for RHA, was immediately very happy with the student turnout, “It’s only been 12 minutes and a whole bunch of people are here so this is really exciting. I hope all of the pumpkins go. Last year we ran out of pumpkins which is why we upped the number. I want to see three hundred pumpkins gone.”

Students were eager to pick their pumpkins and visit the various activities. Emily Caputo, freshman biology major, was really happy to be at the event. “I like it because I love pumpkins and I wouldn’t have been able to get my pumpkin if this did not happen.”

In addition to Caputo, Emily Santana, freshman English major, agreed that she would not have gotten a pumpkin without the RHA’s event. Santana added, “I attended Battle of the Buildings and Late Night Lounge; I enjoy what the RHA puts on. This is fun!”

Krista Varanyak, sophomore, Spanish and mathematics major and Vice President of Advocacy for RHA, was shocked with the student response. “We started at six and it’s only six-fifteen and the quad is full. Last year we didn’t have as many things to do. It’s bigger than last year.”

Christopher Walsh and Jessica Anastasio, both freshmen and members of RHA, were in attendance. Walsh said, “I like it a lot. I like that there’s a psychic and a lot of stuff to do. It is season appropriate which is good.”

Jessica Anastasio said, “Well it was very fun and a big success. There were a lot of really great events. It was fun to come and hang out on the quad. My favorite part was the candy apples. I liked getting them decorated and they were really good.”

“This event was about $3,500,” stated Catalano. “Our biggest expense is definitely the pumpkins. There is a company called Total Entertainment and they’re awesome. We use them for Battle of the Buildings and they were the ones that brought the pumpkins, the apples and the psychic.”

Alexa Anastasio, senior and President of RHA, was extremely pleased with the turnout. She said, “Last year we had a similar amount of people but this year we had more. People are still in line to see the psychic and we only have about 30 minutes left. We added the s’mores this year, which are always a big hit. The candy apples were new too and that ended up being a big hit too.” She was also very proud of her team. “Alissa Catalano spearheaded this event and it took her a couple of weeks to plan; the whole idea came months ago. It’s a long process but at least 300 people came so it was worth it.”

As the evening darkened and 9:00 pm struck, the RHA began to clean up the quad.

“The next event is going to be in December,” Catalano said. “We don’t have a name for it yet but it’s going to be a time to relieve stress.” Last year, the event involved making bars of soap and bamboo plants. “This year it’s going to be something along the same lines where you can make something, hang out with your friends, and escape finals studying,” Catalano said.

Alexa Anastasio further described the upcoming event, “It will be a study break for finals. Hopefully we can give people something they can take home. There’ll be projects, activities, food and more.”

The Residence Hall Association meets weekly. Alexa Anastasio wants students to remember, “If you want to get involved in RHA please come to the meetings, 8:00 pm, Wednesday nights. There are different types of meetings too. We do monthly town hall but we also do fun activities. This coming Wednesday, we hope to do a Fall/Thanksgiving themed craft and have some pizza.” In addition to food and fun, she adds, “It’s a great way to hang out and meet friends.”

PHOTO COURTESY of Alexis Caplinger