University Residential Student Community replaced its traditional Welcome Week foam pit party with a highlighter party to accommodate more students at one time and avoid technical issues brought on by the foam.
Students wore white shirts to the party, which still went from 9 p.m. to midnight Friday, and URSC handed out neon necklaces and highlighters for students to write on each other. Students’ shirts and drawings glowed under the blacklight.
URSC public relations coordinator Jennifer Lee said replacing the foam pit with a highlighter party made the event more accessible.
“There were some issues with keeping the foam pit fully inflated during the dance, which took away from the amount of time students had to dance in the pit,” Lee said. “To avoid long lines, URSC decided to go with a highlighter party where a large number of students could participate at the same time.”
Some freshmen who attended the dance said they had fun but thought a foam pit would have been more unique.
“It was fun but a foam party would have been cooler,” said Kaeli Lynam, a freshman majoring in international relations. “I’ve been to a lot of highlighter parties, but I’ve never been to a foam party.”
Still, most people seemed to enjoy how interactive the highlighter party was.
“It’s cool,” said Riley Scott, a freshman majoring in theatre. “It’s nice to meet people because they can sign your shirt and everything.”
Though hundreds of students attended the Welcome Week dance, some messages on the event’s Facebook page showed student discontent, including some who called Welcome Week “incomplete” without foam.
“What happened to [the] Foam Party,” Kiko Zang, a junior majoring in business, wrote on the Facebook event wall. “That was fun!”
Many attendees, however, were happy not to deal with the messiness of foam.
“[Foam] gets gross and wet,” said Kylee Lessard, a freshman majoring in communication. “You’d have to wear a swimsuit to go in it.”
Not all past attendees have been happy with their foam experiences either.
“I remember that the pool was too small and that it got really sticky and nasty,” said Srna Vlaho, a senior majoring in biological sciences. “I think the foam is fun but not very practical to getting people to go in or enjoy it.”
URSC said turnout at the highligher party was better than expected.
“We definitely had around the same, possibly more, attendees as in previous years,” Lee said. “The event was quite successful.”