The Collegian
Monday, November 28, 2022

StreetFest fires up student body for homecoming weekend

<p>University of Richmond community members gather on UR Way for SpiderFest on Nov. 4.</p>

University of Richmond community members gather on UR Way for SpiderFest on Nov. 4.

UR Way was blocked off to traffic on Nov. 4 to make room for StreetFest, a miniature block party that included an assortment of food trucks, games and even a DJ stand.

The blaring music and wide range of food trucks drew a sizable crowd soon after the event opened at noon, though not all students had heard about the event in advance. First-year Cole Breen said he had stumbled upon StreetFest by chance.

“It’s very lively,” he said. “I think a lot of people were actually surprised by the event itself because it wasn’t marketed crazy well, but I think it was a good surprise.”

Sophomore Claire Binkley said she had heard about StreetFest ahead of time.

“I heard about it mostly by word of mouth and through social media, too,” Binkley said.

Some students stopped for a cold treat at Jiji’s Frozen Custard for a break from the unseasonably warm weather, while others opted for one of the more savory lunch offerings available, which included a barbecue menu from Woodhead’s Grill and tacos from Boka Tako.

“Definitely the free food!” said Binkley, when asked what her favorite part of StreetFest had been. “I got chicken tacos.”

The mood grew increasingly buoyant as the afternoon progressed, and groups began gathering for activities, such as a turn at the life sized “Connect 4” set in the middle of the street, a game of spikeball or a quick stop at the SpiderBoard tent for a photo shoot with an inflatable alien. Commemorative 2022 Homecoming Weekend t-shirts were also available for pickup.

Sophomore SpiderBoard representatives Lyla Van Hoven and Aminata Bamba said they were pleased with the turnout for StreetFest, and they felt they had accomplished the StreetFest’s goal of building enthusiasm among the student body heading into homecoming weekend.

“We got rid of the first two hundred t-shirts within an hour,” Van Hoven said. “A lot of people don’t know that it’s homecoming week, but then it’s like, ‘Oh, look, homecoming shirts!’”

They also said that they hoped that StreetFest would help bolster attendance at the following day’s football game against the University of New Hampshire. 

“We really want to get people excited for Saturday’s game,” Bamba said. 

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Judging by the clusters of students dotting the hill in front of the library, laughing over cups of frozen custard and cheering at the DJ’s choice to play “Toxic” by Britney Spears over the loudspeakers, it seems that SpiderBoard managed to do just that.

Contact features writer Kelsey McCabe at kelsey.mccabe@richmond.edu.

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