ACPB is finally figuring it out

Whether you laughed, left or found alternate plans, you’ve got to give the All Campus Programming Board props for bringing Bob Saget to Kent State Thursday night.

ACPB has come under a lot of fire this past year for bringing in lackluster entertainers – Chingy, anyone? – but they raised the bar this week in terms of national and local pull.

One of the reasons Undergraduate Student Senate has said it wants to restructure the way entertainment is done at Kent State is because ACPB has failed to bring acts that interest students.

Almost 5,000 people piled into the M.A.C. Center Thursday to hear one of the most famous TV dads of our childhood shock students with raunchy jokes and not-so-television-friendly words. Tuesday night’s final Battle of the Bands brought about 300 people to the Rathskeller, the event’s largest audience yet.

Numbers don’t lie.

The winning band, NJs and the Jeff, will play at FlashFest Thursday with national acts O.A.R. and Chris Cagle.

And love ’em or hate ’em, these names are recognizable. ACPB has pulled together this year to try to make Kent State a pit stop for national entertainers. It has been in the past, and it can be in the future.

However, ACPB hasn’t exactly been slacking the rest of the year.

The board’s been busy trying to appeal to a variety of audiences – it put on an interactive performance of the Rocky Horror Picture Show, gave student comedians a chance to shine during the American Eagle Campus Comedy Challenge and sponsored or co-sponsored speakers, local concerts and free movie showings.

They probably realized something most politicians recognize early in their careers: You can’t please all the people all the time.

There are more than 25,000 undergraduates at Kent State. That doesn’t even take graduate students, students at the regional campuses, faculty, staff or members of the Kent community into consideration.

It’s hard enough for groups of friends to pick a place for lunch or for roommates to decide how to set up their living room. Can we really expect the entire Kent State community to agree on what makes for good entertainment?

Absolutely not.

ACPB has the right idea. They’ve been trying to appeal to smaller groups of students – lots of smaller groups – as well as bring in some acts with further-reaching fanbases. The idea is that at some point during the year, most students can find at least one event to get excited about.

Let’s hope that this doesn’t change with the potential restructuring.

USS wants ACPB to focus on bringing in just big musical acts. There is no one group that every student at Kent State will want a ticket to. Facebook keeps tabs of the interests everyone in a network lists on their site: Kent State lists Rascal Flatts, Green Day and Jack Johnson in the top ten. While unofficial, it’s still pretty indicative of the wide variety of music Kent State students listen to.

ACPB has been appealing to students – they’ve just recognized that the way to do this is to focus on holding more smaller events rather than just a few big ones.

The above column is the consensus opinion of the Daily Kent Stater editorial board.