Songfest raises money for local community center

Members of Sigma Alpha Epison, Sigma Chi, and Phi Kappa Psi dance to Wiz Khalifa’s “We Dem Boyz” at Songfest in the M.A.C. Center on Sunday, Nov. 22, 2015. Songfest raised $41,150 for the King Kennedy Center in Ravenna.

Kayla Sturm

Update: After totaling ticket sales and last minute donations, the Greek community raised $56,500 for the King Kennedy Community Center.

Kent State’s Greek community gathered in the M.A.C. Center on Sunday to raise a total of $41,150 for the King Kennedy Community Center.

The event, which showcased the acting, singing and dancing of sorority and fraternities, divided the Greek community into different colored teams: red, green, blue, orange, yellow, purple and pink.  

After the skits came to an end, the green team, with members from Chi Omega, Phi Delta Theta and Alpha Epsilon Phi, were awarded the people’s choice award for their school of rock skit.

As the night came to an end, the teams who raised the most money were announced. In first place was the orange team, with $6,000 raised. Second place went to the green team with a total of $5,000 and third went to the yellow team for raising over $2,000.

“It was electrifying (to perform) and going into it we knew we had the best group and best shot of winning,” said Jacob Thompson, a member of Phi Kappa Psi.

Phi Kappa Psi was part of the orange team, performing a Harry Potter-based skit educating the audience on what the King Kennedy Community Center is. 

The center, a non-profit organization in Ravenna, Ohio, is part of the larger non-profit called Family and Community Services, said Bailey Oswald.

Oswald is an employee at the center and a senior human development and family studies major at Kent State.

“The King Kennedy Community Center also pairs with Kent State students, faculty, and student organizations to provide tutors, volunteers, and program leaders,” she said. “We also host graduate classes who often do research and need assessments to find what is needed in the community.”

The center has been beneficial for Portage County by educating and inspiring the community.

“The center’s mission statement is: ’We aim to inspire, educate, and empower the community. Your needs, your ideas, your priorities, your center,’” Oswald said. 

The goal of the event was not only to raise money, but also to show that the Greek community hosts unique events and raise awareness of the King Kennedy Center.

“It is important that people know about King Kennedy because it is important to know that the Center is part of Kent State’s rich history,” Oswald said. “It was founded and created in the 70s by the McElrath community, Black United Students, Greek Life, various other KSU student organizations and a scattering of other Kent State students, faculty, and staff.”

Recognition was given to the top three performing teams.

“It is better to raise money for (an) issue (close to home) because it benefits the community as a whole,” said Joanna Sullivan, a member of Delta Gamma.

The winning team of the night went to the orange team, made up of members from Delta Gamma, Sigma Alpha Epsilon, Sigma Chi, and Phi Kappa Psi.

Kayla Sturm is the Greek life reporter for The Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected]