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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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One step away
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Chi Omega to hold 41st annual Songfest

Photo by Photo by Meredith Seaver

First year members of Chi Omega performed the opening number of Songfest 2018 prior to the competing acts.

Chi Omega will hold its 41st annual Songfest, with 29 different student organizations set take the stage during the two-night silent auction and stage performance.
In Rudder Auditorium on November 8 and 9, Chi Omega will host Songfest to benefit a multitude of philanthropies and charities. The event starts at 10 p.m. on Friday and 1 p.m. on Saturday.
Each year, two participating student organizations on campus are paired together to put on a unique performance to win money for their philanthropy. The participants include women’s organizations and Greek life, as well as men’s organizations and squadrons of the Corps of Cadets. The event also helps Chi Omega in supporting their national philanthropy, the Make-A-Wish foundation, and their local philanthropy, Still Creek Ranch. Tickets for the event can be bought online or at the box office on the day of the event in Rudder Auditorium.
The event, according to Grace Mahaffey, communications senior and the Overall Songfest chair, is a skit and dance competition where 14 teams have to come up with a seven-minute story with a theme. Mahaffey said that each act picks a philanthropy to benefit, and money is donated for the organization’s participation. Last year, Songfest raised almost 189,000 dollars, Mahaffey said and was able to create meaningful bonds with students across campus.
“There are 29 on-campus student organizations that participate in [Songfest], and there are a lot of friendships and relationships that come out of Songfest,” Mahaffey said.
Although each organization participating collects money for their philanthropy, the first through third place prizes receive a larger sum to donate to their philanthropy, Mahaffey said.
“If you place first, second or third, you get additional money for winning,” Mahaffey said. “And there are other ways, like a crowd favorite award. Every organization participating gets money donated to their philanthropy and the money that’s leftover gets donated to our local philanthropy, Still Creek Ranch.”
As the overall chair, Mahaffey is involved in almost every aspect of the event and said its longevity is due to its overall success as a philanthropic event.
“It’s amazing that we are able to donate to every organization’s philanthropy that is participating and that’s because of how successful it is,” Mahaffey said. “We also donate to our national philanthropy Make-A-Wish and the Make-A-Wish girl gets to come to Songfest and watch, which is so fun.”
Lauren Donovan, accounting junior and one of the silent auction chairs, which will occur on Saturday night at six and is open until the intermission of the event. Items in the auction include David Gardner’s raffle and sporting event tickets. Donovan said that Songfest is a great way to bring unity not just within Chi Omega, but with all of the other philanthropies as well.
“Songfest, for me, was the first time that I felt like I had a place in Chi O,” Donovan said. “I also just appreciate that it’s upbeat and energetic and it’s a fun thing in the midst of school that is hectic, crazy and sometimes negative.”
The unifying factor of Songfest is built upon the performances between the two groups paired together and the common goal of philanthropic work that drives each group, said Sophia Olson, psychology freshman.
“I love to laugh with people and [Songfest] is just a fun way to get out of your shell and meet people,” Olson said. “For me, it was just a great way to put myself out there and do something I would never do at home, especially as a freshman.”
Olson said that Songfest is a truly great and entertaining show with freshmen and seniors, boys and girls, from all organizations, not just Greek life.
“With all of the money gained, none of that will benefit A&M Chi Omega or A&M Zeta,” Olson said. “All of this money being raised and all of the contests that are happening will be benefitting philanthropies and charities based on who wins. We are not doing it benefit ourselves, we are doing it for other people and I think that’s a really big value here at A&M.”

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