The theme for Jesuit’s Awarefest and Issues Day this year was clean water, a serious problem in the world we live in, even though we may not always see it firsthand.
The booths at this year’s festivities included the Environmental Club, Medical Society, 24/7, the Pro-Life Club, the Social Justice Club, Irish Heritage, Interact, and Millions for One, with the Mexican exchange students also setting up a booth. Each of these clubs had its own booth talking about the different problems the world has with obtaining clean water.
The best booths were voted on by selected judges from the Jesuit Community, such as theology teacher Mr. Keith Reese. After surveying all the booths, the judges got together and decided on the winners: 1st Place- Medical Society, 2nd Place- 24/7, and 3rd Place- Millions for One.
The Medical Society had an interesting set up with pertinent water facts written
on a white board and a bowl of water with numbered ping-pong balls. Those observers who considered themselves well-versed in biology and medicine drew a ball and were asked a question; if they answered the difficult question correctly they were awarded an elusive mint.
24/7 went with a different approach, displaying through colored water bottles how much water is consumed by various countries such as the U.S. and France. They had a raffle type game where contestants spun a wheel-of-fortune-like contraption, determining the type of water they drink. To represent how many people suffer from drinking unclean water, the odds of getting the dirty water were much greater than the odds of receiving clear water.
Millions for One, the group building the well in Nicaragua, had a booth that gave facts about the proposed well and information on how attendees could show their support. They also sold bracelets–all of whose proceeds go to building water wells in third world countries–and let people taste a tres leches cake in return for reading the group’s information.
These were not the only groups that sponsored booths at Awarefest; the Environmental Club gave information on the North Pacific Gyre, a network of currents in the pacific ocean that are causing an accumulation of trash the size of Texas right in the middle of the ocean. Also, the Irish Heritage Club, with sophomore Charlie Turano at the booth, gave out cannolis and spoke of ways we can fix our clean water dilemma.
Jesuit’s exchange students from Guadalajara, Mexico, also participated in Awarefest by setting up a table draped in a Mexican flag and showing an informative PowerPoint presentation on the water crisis. The students provided free Mexican fare, with fresh vegetables and tasty, grilled tortillas. The Pro- life club also showed proactive ways we can help people who need clean water as opposed to the usual but necessary list of problems that need to be told.
In addition to the informational booths, a collection of bands played inside the Terry Center. The stage had been set, all the amps and musical equipment put in place, as well as multicolored lights put up near the stage. The bands, which auditioned in February for a spot to play in Awarefest, competed for a large, golden, plastic chalice, which signified “Best Band.” The bands all brought their best, and the competition was fierce, as the whole event was recorded on video and broadcast on the huge projector board during the performance.
Opening the show was “Bucket O’ Lotta,” comprised of sophomores Will Cravens, Will Patterson, Grant Pittman, Patrick McNearny, and senior John Anderson. Next went student acts Sam Ford, The Resistance of Flightless Pigeons, Mr. Sam Wilson, S.J., Emergency Jam Band, The Avant-Gardes, Alex Venegas and CO, No Name Band, Men Who Doodle, and The Topsiders, who won the competition with juniors Davis Bruegger (lead vocals), Brooks Barnhouse (guitar), Matt Powers (bass guitar), Ben Nichols (percussion extraordinaire), and Connor Beach (keyboards and backup vocals). Talented sophomore Alex Venegas also demonstrated his virtuosity, performing in two bands- No Name Band and Alex Venegas and CO.
Photography by Jack White ’13