Greek philanthropy event raises money for terminally ill children

Christina Toroyan

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Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity compete in the 3rd annual Turtle Tug on CSUN's North field Saturday. They defeated the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity to win the title of Turtle Tug champion. Photo Credit: Christina Toroyan / Staff Reporter

Despite the morning heat, 12 fraternities and sororities prepared to face each other for the title of 3rd annual Turtle Tug award near CSUN’s North field on Saturday.

Turtle Tug is a national philanthropy event sponsored by the members of Delta Zeta sorority, where teams of five members play tug-of-war over pools of green wrestling Jell-O. The teams play against each other and the winner of each round will make it to two individual semi-final rounds. From there, the two winning teams will face off in the final tug-of-war.

Although the event is open to anyone at CSUN, the 12 participating teams belonged to either the Pan-Hellenic Council or the Interfraternity Council. Two were sororities and the rest were fraternities.

“We tried to advertise to all the clubs and organizations on campus,” said Delta Zeta Philanthropy Chair, Corinne Walker, 21, a journalism and theater major. “We only had one fraternity out of the Interfraternity Council participate in the Turtle Tug because we didn’t do a great job advertising on campus.”

Due to Delta Zeta’s house being so diverse, they associate with different fraternities, Walker said. Therefore, getting the 10 fraternities to come out and support Turtle Tug was not difficult.

“Nationally, the turtle is our mascot and our colors are pink and green,” Walker said. “We try to associate them in most of our events.”

Delta Zeta was expecting anywhere from 100 to 180 people to attend. They had roughly 120 people at the field. They charged $10 per player on a team to participate in the Turtle Tug in hopes of making around $2,000.

The money will be sent to Painted Turtle Camp, a Delta Zeta nationally sponsored camp for terminally ill children. At the camp, children learn more about their disease, as well as skills on how to deal with their disease, such as taking their own medicine instead of relying on a parent or caretaker.

“Delta Zeta really stepped it up this year with the food and the slip-and-slide,” said Sigma Alpha Epsilon brother, Alex Velasco, 21, a CTVA major. “These made a huge difference from last year’s Turtle Tug and my position with the sorority helped me have more fun.”

Velasco is Delta Zeta’s Dream Man – a male in a fraternity who has the special honor of wearing Delta Zeta’s letters for one year. Fraternities are typically not allowed to wear sororities’ letters.

Delta Zeta had a lot of help from Associated Students with the funding for the event, said Delta Zeta Vice President of Programs, Katie Resendez, 19, a Family Consumer Science major. The bagels and tacos were donated from Western Bagel and Rubio’s and the sodas were donated from Jarritos, she said.

The goal for next year is to try and get a more diverse participation from campus aside from the Greek Row.

“For the past three years, sororities were not the actual players of Turtle Tug, even though they were always welcome,” said Resendez.

The two sororities that played at the Turtle Tug were Kappa Kappa Gamma and Alpha Phi.

“We ended up going to finals and winning the first year participating,” said Kappa Kappa Gamma sister, Rochelle Traugh, 21, a business marketing major.

Kappa Kappa Gamma won against one of Delta Zeta’s teams.

“I think the event next year should have a stronger non-Greek involvement,” Resendez said.

Every participant who played in the semi-finals will receive a prize.

Although members of Delta Zeta feel the event should be opened up to more CSUN students, aside from having Greek involvement, Josh Brown, a prospective member for Sigma Alpha Epsilon, feels it makes more sense to stay within the Greek system because it is a sorority event.

“The only thing I would change for next year is tying people to the ropes so they end up falling in the pool instead of trying to dodge it by sliding to the side,” said Brown, 18, a Kinesiology major.

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