Some want sudsy return

Eden Cohen, Staff Writer

About a hundred people seemed to appreciate being served beer Sept. 25, and some say they want another round.

Beer was served in a tent run by Alumni Association members as part of the university’s homecoming celebration. The event, named Big Top Party Tent, received attention because of its drink menu.

“It’s so atypical of UPJ,” attendee Sam Louderback said. “There’s never alcohol provided by the school.”

Students and alumni seem to agree that they would like to see more events like it. Alumnus Nolan McGuire said he appreciated acknowledgment that some attendees are not children.

“It is nice to have an adult tailgate instead of going down blow-up slides,” he said, referring to last year’s games. “(It’s) probably the coolest thing the school has ever done.”

Louderback said he did not see event advertisements, yet word seemed to get around. About 125 people attended, according to Alumni Relations Coordinator Kayla Garshnick.

“The turnout was great,” Garshnick said.

Despite its popularity, the tent did have a few problems. For one, the beer supply ran out in two hours.

Beer was first-come, first-served, Garshnick said, and not intended to be unlimited. McGuire said he felt they were intentionally understocked.

“I used to work at a bar; you don’t run out of beer,” he said.

More alumni he knew intended to come later, McGuire said, but did not because the beer ran out early. This could have attributed to the tent’s second problem: its lack of alumni.

McGuire and Louderback both said the event was enjoyable, but not ideal, for networking. Louderback said he talked to only recent graduates and current students, and McGuire estimated fewer than 10 alumni attended.

“I wish it was more networking,” McGuire said.

Still, Louderback and McGuire said they likely would return to a similar event.

Alumni Association directors and Alumni Office staff members haven’t decided whether to hold a similar event again, Garshnick said, but are open to feedback.

“It should just be a tradition that grows exponentially,” McGuire said.