Although the name Rah-Rah! Fete sounds strange, event organizers and seniors Kathleen Beeson and Kaley Morlock describe it as “a multimedia exhibition that links every part of campus.” The name stems from the French word for festival, fete, and the word rah-rah, meaning enthusiasm for one’s college, and it will take place on Saturday, May 23 from 11 a.m. to approximately 6 p.m. on the south lawn of Seymour Union.
The festival will include music and poetry performances by students, student artwork displays and an “odd objects exhibition,” which will display strange things that students donate. Students are encouraged to wear costumes, and those with outstanding outfits are eligible to win a costume contest, with prizes from Cornucopia and Kaldi’s.
Eight to nine bands will perform on the south lawn throughout the day and poets will perform during an intermission. Bands include Elbow Macaroni, Ree-Yees, Jimmy’s Other Band, and a jazz ensemble. Student artwork will be located on easels throughout the lawn.
Various clubs will also sponsor events throughout the day. The Alliance for Peaceful Action (APA) plans to have a fair trade chocolate fountain, Students Without Borders will hand out “seed bombs” (packets of seeds) and the Outdoors Club will set up a teepee. Other events include a pie-eating contest organized by Baked Benevolence and a zine-making workshop hosted by Zine Club.
Beeson and Morlock said they decided to organize Rah-Rah! Fete in order to showcase bands and highlight student talent that could go unrecognized.
“We don’t have a battle of the bands or a venue where bands can perform, so this is a great way for bands to get some recognition,” Beeson said.
Beeson, who heads Outdoor Club and Concert Club, and Morlock, who organizes Artsplosion, decided to join forces to create what Morlock called “the ultimate festival.”
While the event began as a music festival and art show, the event kept growing. Morlock said she hopes the event will benefit Knox by “[incorporating] all aspects of campus life.”
Beeson also hopes the event will help “people recognize the talents of their fellow students outside of academics.”
Director of Dining Services Helmut Meyer agreed to close the Cafeteria and Oak Room during the festival and serve a variety of international foods on the south lawn. Meals will be free for students on board and $6.50 for students off-board. With the help of Student Senate and KARES, Beeson and Morlock purchased biodegradable dishware. Beeson said she hopes this effort will set an example for other outdoor events on campus.
Beeson and Morlock began planning Rah-Rah! Fete during spring break and credit Dean of Students Xavier Romano with providing much of the funds for the event.