Under the sultry sun, students gathered on the Matador Bookstore lawn to celebrate the building of the new recreation center coming spring 2012.
The University Student Union celebrated the halfway point of building the new recreation center during the Student Recreation Center Halftime Report by handing out free food and raising health awareness on campus with DJ Rich spinning sensational beats. Different aspects of the rec center were represented with weights, racquetball, rock climbing, basketball and even a kiddy pool.
“We wanted to educate the student population about the student rec center,” said Kalia Lavin, a 21-year-old grad assistant for the rec center. “This mini reception is a great way to educate students even if it’s with cheesy activities.”
According to Lavin, the rec center should be opening spring 2012 and this event is a great way to start getting students aware.
“We are lucky to have been blessed with an awesome marketing department,” said Lavin. “The USU has been supportive and extremely helpful promoting the rec center. They have been so enthusiastic with their support. The rock climbing wall is very eye-catching”
One of the first people to do the rock climbing station, Sidney Fernandez, was shocked to see a rock climbing station while walking over to the bookstore.
“I was just walking down to grab some food and decided to do some rock climbing instead,” said Fernandez, a 23-year-old mechanical department major. “If the rec center was open now I would so be there. I wish it was like the one at Moorpark College by having a spinning, rotating, and vertical treadmill-like surface to climb. Still I wish I was going to be around when (the rec center) finally opens.”
During the event, 10 males and females participated in a rock climbing competition. Samantha Gross, a junior majoring in special education and Spanish, and
Josh Berry, a junior majoring in communication, won the competition by having the best times to reach the top. They each received a Student Rec Center swag bag, two tickets for the aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, and a $50 gift card from REI.
Several stations were setup to represent the different aspects of the rec center. Students were given a card that needed to be signed off by all the various stations before receiving their free trail mix, one of the many things used to promote healthy awareness. Raffle tickets were also given out to students after they completed stations so they could enter a drawing for a bike, day passes to the rec center, membership for the rec center, and a personal workout station.
“It’s a future glimpse of what we are going to have,” said Joanna Chin, a 17-year-old liberal studies major. “It’s great to see what the rec center is going to be like and I can hardly wait.”
One of the most memorable and popular booths at the event was the Klotz Student Health Center. At the booth, students would spin a wheel and learn about various health facts.
“The outreach with students is great,” said Janis Martin, wellness coach and substance use specialist for the Klotz Student Health Center. “We are here to inform people and help those who know people or personally have substance abuse problems.”
Jasmin Palomera, a 21-year-old child development major, is just one of many excited about the new rec center, especially since it will be free.
“I want to stay on campus to workout instead of driving around and save money on gas,” said Palomera. “It will be so worth having the rec center on campus considering all the money we spend. It will definitely make our campus healthier.”
Sudep Davis Raavi is one of many students who learned of the event by staying connected with the USU and AS on social networking sites. However, he wishes more had been done.
“I found out about the event after receiving a text (from the USU) and on Facebook (from Associated Students),” said Raavi, a 23-year-old mechanical engineering major. “It’s better if more people know about these events. Maybe more promotion is needed with flyers and posters. There were some signs, but I saw very few flyers.”
One sign that was heavily advertised was voting for the new student rec center slogan. Voting has never been so easy. Students had the opportunity yesterday to vote for the rec center’s slogan by placing a black or white marble in one of three slogan boxes: “Where Matadors Play,” “Matadors…Make Your Move” and “Make Your Move.”
“This was informative,” said Troy Scott, a 35-year-old theater major, as he munched on his trail mix. “There is a lot of energy and excitement by offering students free stuff. My only complaint was I wish there was a small wall to actually play racquetball, but it was still fun. The swimming pool (station) was cheesy, but it was also very fun.”
Student sports clubs were also represented with the hockey and the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu clubs showing their support.
Lavin hopes the next event will be moved toward the Student Union. The next event is scheduled for February 26, 2011 with another event planned next fall before the grand opening.