About a week or so ago, having been tasked with covering a school event, I attended DelVal’s Fall Fest. Before I divulge my feelings regarding this event I feel that it’s a necessity to provide some information regarding my past experience. My high school had about 4,000 students in it, and was composed of two campuses a half mile from one another. After high school I attended Temple University whose student population is approximately twenty times that of Delaware Valley University. That being said, here are my thoughts.
Fall Fest flopped. When I first saw the colorful advertisement in the window of the student center, I thought it’d be a fun choice, but when I arrived it was far from what I’d envisioned. My primary criticisms are as follows..
- The location was poorly chosen. They tucked the thing behind the stadium (where our soccer team was subsequently getting stomped by Immaculata) across the train tracks just beyond the furthest reaches of the student parking lot. When I first got out of my car I remember thinking Where’s Fall Fest? Oh, there it is.. I think. I’ll go ask.
- There was not enough going on. I couldn’t hear if there was any music from my car, and I can’t remember if there was any playing when I got there. Very few students were in attendance. There were several tables set up, a couple of moon bounce type-deals, a bean bag toss game, sack racing, and a pommel horse. There was free food, which I’d expected would draw a decent crowd, but I feel like most students here already have access to all the food they need with their meal plans.
- School spirit is weak. This is not so much an accusation of Fall Fest itself as it is of our university. As I alluded to earlier, I left at some point in order to watch the second half of our school soccer game. Not surprisingly, the soccer game also had a poor turnout. DelVal fans were clearly outnumbered in our own stands by Immaculata people.
Holding a Fall Fest seems like a great idea. It’s an opportunity for students to socialize and have fun for free. I feel like a large part of the problem was that Fall Fest (and the soccer game for that matter) were ineffectively advertised. I saw the ad in the window of the student center, but I don’t recall seeing any flyers anywhere or seeing anyone around campus promoting the event. Also, it seems like the quad would have been a much better choice of location. It’s got lots more space, and it’s much closer to student housing. I’d have tried to organize some sort of live music for the event, perhaps via a DelVal Battle of the Bands or something to that effect, and I’d have cranked the music up so loud that all of the campus residents could hear it.
Perhaps I’m alone in my opinion. There were thirty or forty students who seemed to be having a good time. Perhaps such is life at a small school, but I like to think that we can do better. Two stars.