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Sunday, September 27, 2020


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Greek organizations host spring philanthropy events

Certain Greek organizations at University of Richmond have held or are planning spring charity events to raise money for their national philanthropies.

The Pi Beta Phi sorority hosted its annual Ballin' for Books basketball tournament Wednesday, March 20, in the Weinstein Center for Recreation and Wellness, said junior Emily Shuman, Pi Phi's vice president for philanthropy, who organized the event.

Pi Phi raised $560 from the tournament, which will go to the national Pi Beta Phi Foundation, particularly its literary fund that benefits First Book, Shuman said. First Book is an organization that works with publishers and retailers to give grants to schools in need, which are then used to buy textbooks at reduced prices.

The registration cost was $20 per team, Shuman said. This year, Shuman and her co-chairwoman, Kellyn Campbell, bracketed the tournament so that spectators could bet on which team would win, "to get everyone in the March Madness spirit," Shuman said.

The Delta Gamma sorority created a new philanthropy event this year, said junior Jen Darsie, vice president foundations, who planned the event. On Wednesday, March 27, DG held its first Anchor Slam volleyball tournament in the Wellness Center. The event raised about $300, which will be donated to Service for Sight, Delta Gamma's national philanthropy, Darsie said. Service for Sight assists the blind and visually impaired.

The Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity held its second annual SPEaster Saturday, March 30, said sophomore Skye Samse, who is the philanthropy co-chairman for Sig Ep. The brothers advertised in the Tyler Haynes Commons during the week leading up to the event to raise donations.

The fraternity raised about $500, Samse said, and the money will go to the Virginia Home for Boys and Girls, which supports orphaned children in the greater Richmond area. At SPEaster, there were games and activities, such as a dunk tank, on the Westhampton Green.

Delta Delta Delta sorority hosted its annual Delta Dodgeball tournament Wednesday, April 3, in the Wellness Center, said junior Meredith Walsh, Tri Delta's chapter president. Almost $1,400 was raised, a huge increase from the $495 raised at last year's tournament, Walsh said. All of the money will be donated to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

At the tournament, raffle tickets were awarded to stores in the Richmond area, such as Escape Nails in The Village Shopping Center and Pearl's Cupcake Shoppe on Grove Avenue, Walsh said.

The tournament is always held close to or in March, which is Tri Delta's St. Jude Month, Walsh said. To start the month, Tri Delta held its Kickin' It to Chemo campaign, which began nationally after a patient at St. Jude started wearing cowboy boots because his doctor advised him to wear shoes he could easily put on and remove.

The sorority also hosted an event called Sincerely Yours, where members wrote letters to family and friends to ask for donations to St. Jude, Walsh said.

Sigma Chi fraternity's annual Derby Days will run April 10-12, said junior Rooney Columbus, president of Sig Chi. Proceeds from the event will be donated to the Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah and Connor's Heroes. Connor's Heroes provides assistance to children who are being treated for cancer at the Children's Hospital of Richmond at Virginia Commonwealth University.

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Wednesday, April 10, there will be a dunk tank in the University Forum from 11 a.m. until 2:30 p.m., where passersby can pay to dunk fraternity brothers. One throw costs $3 and three throws are $5, Columbus said.

From 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., Dancing with the Frat Stars will take place in The Web, he said. For $20, teams of up to three people can register to dance with a Sig Chi brother in a competition. A panel of faculty members will serve as judges. Audience members will be charged $5 at the door.

On Thursday, April 11 from 6 to 7:30 p.m., the Connor's Heroes Spelling Bee will take place in Ukrop's Auditorium, Columbus said.Up to three members from each organization may enter, and they will pay a $20 registration fee. There will also be a suggested $5 donation upon entering. Audience members can donate money in order to give correct letters to participants who are struggling to spell words, and the cost will increase as the rounds go on.

From 3 p.m. to 5 p.m., Friday, April 12, the fraternity will host a powderpuff football tournament at Upper President's Field, Columbus said. Each organization will be allowed two teams and will be assigned a coach from the fraternity to hold practices during the week leading up to the game. The registration fee for each 10- to 15-member team is $50.

Members of the fraternity will be manning tables April 10-11 in the Commons, Columbus said. Donations will be payable via cash and Spider Dollars.

The Kappa Alpha Theta sorority will host its annual KATwalk fashion show at 7 p.m. April 16 in the Alice Haynes Room, said junior Victoria Kinnealey, chief marketing officer for Theta. All proceeds from the event will go to Theta's national philanthropy, Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), Kinnealey said. CASA supports children in the court system who do not have parents or guardians to take care of them.

Kinnealey said Theta hoped to raise more than $4,000 this year, which she said she was confident they would be able to accomplish. The sorority raised $3,000 for CASA at KATwalk last year.

Local Richmond boutiques will donate clothing for members of Theta and other sororities to model on the runway, Kinnealey said. There will be an intermission, and a representative from CASA will address the audience.

The second half of the show will feature a walk-off where students from any campus organization may dress in creative outfits to display on the runway. Three professors will judge which performance they like the most, Kinnealey said. Organizations that are interested in participating in the walk-off should contact Kinnealey at, she said.

All of the Greek organizations will have an opportunity to join and raise money during the Special Olympics' Greek Games on Saturday, April 13, said Darsie, who is a Special Olympics intern this semester.

Although this is the fourth annual Greek Games, this will be the first year it is held on Richmond's campus. From noon to 5 p.m., there will be relay races and a tug of war competition for six-person teams. The event is open to organizations from Richmond and VCU, Darsie said.

Contact reporter Renee Ruggeri at

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