As a member of the Traditions and Community committee, I am tasked with planning traditional, community building events around Rutgers. Going to such a large university has its ups and downs. Despite the huge population of students it’s very easy to feel alone. That’s where Hot Dog Day comes in. It is one of RUPA’s largest traditions and its true purpose, at least for me, is to bring the student body together for one day of fun, food, and excitement. We take a space that is associated with classes, school, work, etc. and we transform it, give it a new purpose which makes the experience that much worth while. I mean, why else would we closed down College Ave?! Not only is it a fun event, but it is also a relaxing event in that there is no pressure or obligation. Hot Dog Day is there for you to grab some free food, play some cool games, and hang out with friends or any new people you meet while you’re there.
One of the challenges of planning a traditional event is trying to recreate the same event in a way that is different but always the same. This year we made the theme Survivor, based off the reality competition show. Going with that theme we had three inflatables, all competition based, and a rock wall. To make the battle sweeter, the first 500 people to complete 3 out of 4 activities won a Survivor buff. Of course, it is challenging handling so many moving parts, from food to activities to foot traffic, but it is an experience that is extremely rewarding, especially when you see everyone enjoying themselves! From our pro-staff supporting the event, to our student staff quickly assembling hot dogs, even the students who consume 1,000 hot dogs, everyone plays a role in making this event awesome. I don’t know what’s in store for next year, but it is definitely worth the wait!
— Savannah Demande, Marketing Assistant Director of Traditions and Community