On Thursday, September 9, College Library held the second annual Helen C. House Party. Despite road construction which limited access to College Library, the house party was a great success with an estimate that nearly 2000 students stopped in between the hours of 7 and 11 pm. The library remained open for normal business during the party (and some students continued studying throughout the party chaos), but the majority of staff and patrons were on hand to partake of the free food and fun.
Nearly every area of College Library was transformed for the party. The courtyard became a small carnival with cotton candy, music from WSUM (the student radio station), balloon art by Lochlan Masters, and the ever-popular Pick-a-Duck game. The indoor carnival theme continued on the first floor with face-painting, palm reading and a Nerf shooting gallery. The library also showcased video games from its collection, including the newly released Green Day Rock Band on PlayStation 3, and various games for Wii. Room 1193D was host to a popular LAN party featuring Team Fortress 2 and Left4Dead2. Open Book, Room 1250, was divided into several sections. One part of the room was devoted to arts-and-crafts where students were able to weave friendship bracelets, practice origami, or decorate their very own tote bag. Gaming options included Little Big Planet, Super Mario Brothers, a variety of board games, plus iMac kiosks were transformed into retro video game stations. The other section of the room was given over to a Texas Hold ‘Em Poker Tournament. Free food was offered on the second floor this year where student groups provided entertainment on the Main Stage to party attendees waiting patiently in line for their chance at pizza, Chinese food, bagels, and more. Featured performers included Madtown Ballroom, a Tae Kwon Do demonstration, UW Dance Elite, The Wisconsin Singers, a Capoeira demo, the UW Breakdance Club, and the a capella group, Tangled Up in Blue. Some of the performers then offered follow-up lessons in ballroom and salsa dancing. On the third floor students were able to catch a viewing of the movie Hot Tub Time Machine and play ninja tag in the dark.
The Helen C. House Party was sponsored by the Center for the First Year Experience at UW-Madison and listed as an official Wisconsin Welcome event. It also received generous support through food donations from Gumby’s Pizza, Pepsi, Frito Lay, and several local restaurants. The John M. Gaus fund provided additional support. We are grateful to all of our sponsors.
Rest assured, planning has already begun for the 3rd annual Helen C. House Party. More featured articles.