UAB continues Jamaican 'em crazy before finals week

With two consecutive successes under their belts, the University Activities Board officers have unleashed Jamaican craziness upon Fort Hays State University students once again running from April 26-May 1.

Jamaican Me Crazy began with a bang as the recent movie "50 First Dates" rolled out of theatres and onto Lewis Field Monday for a 9 p.m. drive-in showcase that followed the Tailgate barbecue.

Jacque McKenna, Jennings senior and University Activities Board president, said that an estimated 700 students braved the dreary weather to be entertained by Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore's latest film antics.

Tuesday's "Best Breast" chicken feed, sponsored by the McMindes Hall Council, attracted more than 300 hungry and/or curious students, with the majority of the food gone in the first hour and a half. Students also partook in sand volleyball, tie-dyeing and a hula hoop and limbo contest while a disc jockey added to the energy. Representatives from the Drug and Alcohol Wellness Network served "mocktails."

Wednesday's activities began at 5 p.m. with the Photo Scavenger Hunt sponsored by the Student Government Association. Teams of four or less were given a disposable camera to take pictures of themselves with their items. Most of the items were on campus, but a few required the teams to visit G Willikers and the sorority houses. Prizes were awarded at Thursday's luau for the most creative pictures.

Tiger Idol also returned to campus Wednesday as FHSU students were given the opportunity to compete vocally for a $250 check and a $50 check for the most outrageous performers.

McKenna said that the "American Idol" spin-off was created by some "hardcore fans" in the UAB office who wanted to have some of the local talent showcased.

?It was great for an FHSU turnout,? McKenna said. ?We had an awesome crowd! Fans brought posters and screamed for their favorite performer.?

During Tiger Idol, winners of the "Room Raiders" competition were announced. Josh Todd, Tempe, AZ, senior and Carrie McMillen, Dodge City junior, each raided three rooms of the opposite sex, choosing a room-owner to go on a date with based solely upon their findings in the room.

Thursday evening featured a luau on the quad from 5-8 p.m., sponsored by Chartwells, the university's food service. Carnival and inflatable games, mocktails, a sand castle contest, a disc jockey and give away drawings kept students busy despite the evening's chilly weather.

"The weather definitely didn't work in our favor," McKenna said. "Still, there were 200-250 that showed up during the evening, so we still had a great crowd. Considering the weather, we were very happy."

McKenna said that $1,500 in prizes were given out during the evening and included items such as a home theatre system, a DVD player and an X-Box.

Wiest Hall Casino Night concluded the evening as students played various casino games in Wiest Hall in hopes of winning a prize.

Students were offered more music during Friday's "Battle of the Bands," as acts duked it out musically to be the opening act for a future concert.

"We try to keep the acts pretty local since we want the bands have an FHSU connection," McKenna said.

Saturday concluded Jamaican Me Crazy with the Intramurals Department's Mudfest '04. Students got down and dirty with mud volleyball, mud tug-of-war, a mud flop contest and a pedal tractor pull. Musicians The Blades played live during Mudfest.

"We really encouraged students to come because it was just one more fun activity to balance out college life and a much needed break before finals," McKenna said.

"Custer Hall used to do Spring Fling for residence hall students," she said. "They were really huge, but in 2001 they began to get a lot smaller. The University Activities Board went to a competition in Omaha, Nebraska, and one of the student groups there had a Jamaican Me Crazy. We just fell in love with the name," she said.

The UAB brought information about the festival back to campus and combined it with several of the Spring Fling activities, creating the current FHSU version of Jamacian Me Crazy.

McKenna said that while she will not be UAB president next year, she does expect to see Jamaican Me Crazy on the spring activity list next year.

"It's a grueling process for us to plan," McKenna said. "There will probably be some revamps -- just little flip-flips. After seven days, the homework and sleep deprivation really start to kick in. But we enjoy it and the students enjoy it too."

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