Omega Psi Phi hosts annual Apollo Night charity event

Tracy Tucholski

The sandman escorts a performer from the stage Friday at Apollo Night. TRACY TUCHOLSKI | DAILY KENT STATER

Credit: Dan Kloock

Hip-hop music provided by DJ J Mixxx of Akron blared from the Kiva Friday night as the brothers of Omega Psi Phi held their Apollo Night competition, an annual charity event for the fraternity.

Participants from Cleveland, Akron and Cincinnati performed their talents to a crowd of about 150 people with a chance to win a $150 grand prize.

Eleven acts rapped, sang, danced or recited spoken word. The crowd acted as the judge, and would either collectively clap and cheer or boo.

Ranon Thompson, Omega Psi Phi member and senior business management major, said the competition was based on the television show “Amateur Night at the Apollo.”

“It’s fun and you don’t have to like everyone participating,” Thompson said. “It’s just something to do.”

If a contestant was booed off, a sandman would come out in a goofy get-up and ask him or her to leave. A sandman is a disguised person who escorts unpopular acts from the stage.

Admission to the event was $5 or $4 with a canned food item. The food received was being sent to local charities, Thompson said.

Jeff Jones, Omega Psi Phi member, hosted the night’s events. Intermission activities included a dance contest, a name-that-song contest, a best-dressed competition, and an Omega Psi Phi trivia question for the chance to win gift cards from Magic City Customs.

Charelle Munnerlyn, junior conflict management major and music minor, sang Jennifer Hudson’s “And I’m Telling You” in the competition. She said she has been singing her entire life.

“It’s a form of release,” Munnerlyn said. “I like having the ability to touch people on a different level.”

Other acts included Kaisha Sherrills, who sang Mary J. Blige’s “I’m Going Down,” LaDon Preach, who recited spoken word and a three-member female dance group from Akron called Swag who received a standing ovation.

Another crowd favorite was a Kent dance group, Final Destination, which danced to a couple of songs including Chris Brown’s “Kiss Kiss.”

Mz. Skittlez and DRE DAY 4Ever Baby made special rap performances.

To decide a winner, Munnerlyn sang a few lines of a song and Swag and Final Destination held a dance-off to Yung Joc’s “Bottle Poppin.”

“They’ve got home field advantage,” Jones said in reference to Final Destination.

Final Destination won by a majority of crowd cheers.

Munnerlyn was content with the decision and said her career in singing is based on wherever God takes her.

“As long as I’m singing, I’m happy,” she said.

Contact Greek life reporter Tracy Tucholski at [email protected].