University of Indianapolis hosted its first winter formal for students in the Egyptian Room at Old National Centre. The dance took place on Dec. 4 and gave students an opportunity to have some fun before finals week, according to junior elementary education major and Campus Traditions Chair Abi Postma.
Postma said the winter formal was partially decided upon this year because the Student Leadership and Activities Board (SLAB) wanted students to have something at the end of the semester. With COVID-19, they were hoping guidelines would be less strict later in the semester.
“We wanted to have something to look forward to because everything is usually right at homecoming and then you have nothing except for midnight breakfast that’s in December,” Postma said. “Having something at the very end, just for students to look forward to is something we were really programming for.”
Precautions against COVID-19 were still being taken at the event, according to Postma. She mentioned that students had to either have been tested negative 72 hours beforehand, or be fully vaccinated in order to attend the dance at this venue.
Assistant Director of Student Activities Sarah Beck said that the Egyptian Room being the venue for this event was one of the features that would make it fun. She said that the venue was secured a long time ago and that this event has been a big focus for the semester.
“Our staff has been working hard to select the catering items and there is a lot of amazing food going to be served, and the venue is so great, the Egyptian Room, that we don’t need to do a lot to make it amazing because the venue is amazing,” Beck said. “We have a special balloon arch for a photo op, and the catering will really be the highlight. We also have secured a DJ, Iman [Tucker], he’s one of the favorites, he’s an alum. Those three features will be a lot of fun.”
This is the first winter formal dance that UIndy has had in place of the homecoming dance, according to Postma. She said that the winter formal was different from homecoming not just based on when it is, but with a variety of other things as well. She said the dance would have food such as cheeseburgers, vegetarian options and many different types of desserts.
“This is a little different from homecoming just because with homecoming we always announce it as just a homecoming dance, there’s nothing super spectacular. This time, there’s not necessarily a theme, but it’s more of a winter aspect, so a lot of people I think are doing the blues and bringing out the winter colors,” Postma said. “We’re also offering a different array of food; usually we’ve only had like desserts and things at homecoming, this year we have different options as far as like actual food goes.”
SLAB is waiting to see whether or not the winter formal will become the new yearly dance at UIndy, Postma said. She said she personally would like to see the winter formal take the place of the homecoming dance, and keep homecoming as just the parade that UIndy had this year.
“It really depends on our venue, because it’s at the Old National Centre, it either may fluctuate between the homecoming and the winter formal just depending on what dates the venue has available,” Postma said.
Beck says that she expects students to have a good time together, and that students can expect great memories to be made while at this event.