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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Big Event to call Research Park home

Research Park
Photo by Allison Bradshaw
Research Park
This year’s Big Event opening ceremony has a new home in Research Park to compensate for the growing number of participants in the largest student-run service project nationwide.
Big Event Outreach Director Robert Kil- lion said the switch from Reed Arena’s Lot 100 is expected to be the new norm for years to come.
“Moving the Kickoff Ceremony to Re- search Park will allow us to really fit the huge number of students that we need to for this year, as well as for the future and the lon- gevity of The Big Event,” Killion said. “We maybe could have made Lot 100 work this year, but we wanted something that would be sustainable for the future as well.” 

Programs Director Mark Lutz said The Big Event has made every effort to notify participants of the change, using various channels to ensure at least one member of each group is aware of the new location. Additionally, people will placed at Lot 100 to redirect those who show up at the wrong location. 

“We’ve been trying to inform people of the change all throughout our recruiting,” Lutz said. “We made sure to advertise that as much as possible, whether it be through word of mouth, organization speakers, maybe writing on classroom chalkboards. Every organization leader had to come to a meeting this week, so through that, every single group has someone who knows where the kickoff is going to be.” 

Killion said a huge factor in choosing Research Park was the large adjacent parking lot, which should be able to fit students travelling to campus for the kickoff ceremony. The lot can hold more than 3,000 vehicles, making it an ideal spot for current and future program growth.  

The kickoff will include free food from sponsors, musical entertainment from Houston disk jockey OG Bobby Trill, and a speech by this years nominated speaker, Scott Shafer. Shafer is a professor in the Department of Recreation, Park and Tourism Sciences, and was chosen from over 40 nominations from the student body. 

Lutz said this year Big Event wants to emphasize that the kickoff is a celebration.

“We went away from the normal folk band we’ve had for the past couple of years because we wanted the ceremony to be a little bit more of a celebration,” Lutz said. “We’re trying something new, and we think its going to be a lot of fun.”

Lutz said that the ceremony provides a fun and social atmosphere meant to pump up those volunteering their day to help serve the Bryan-College Station community.

“Its a great way to start off the day. Free food, free coffee, and a lot of fun,” Lutz said. “Its great time to meet up with your friends. The Big Event happens once a year. For some people it’s even more of a social thing. We’re there to say thank you to the students who are there to serve the community. We want to make it good time.”

Saturday’s ceremony will begin at 8 a.m.

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    Photo by Allison Bradshaw
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