Story by Kelsey Grapperhaus, Staff writer
There’s a first for everything, and for the Beta Nu chapter of Alpha Sigma Alpha, or ASA, it was hosting the first ever Dating Game at Murray State Saturday on Lovett Auditorium’s stage.
The previous fall philanthropy, which consisted of a dodgeball tournament between fraternities, sororities and any other organization on campus that dared create a team, had been significantly losing the community’s interest. This encouraged ASA to attempt to make a more exciting event for students, family and friends to attend this fall.
After mixing things up, the Dating Game re-invented ASA’s fall philanthropy to create a fun, new and exciting twist on the newlywed game.
The Dating Game consisted of two categories: a round for the singles, ready to mingle, and a round for the lovebird couples.
Although the categories were two different rounds during the event, both categories started the same: an interview process.
All it took was $10 to nominate a contestant. If an organization’s nomination for either round made it past the interview, the cost went up to $60 per selected participant.
Sitting in the hot seat one-at-a-time during the singles rounds, two main contestants, one man and one woman, would sit on one side of the curtain and on the other side sat three eligible bachelors/bachelorettes. After a series of questions, the main contestant would choose a date, unable to see what they looked like, based on the answers they provided. The couples round included four couples that answered 10 questions, which tested how well each knew his or her significant other.
After raising $400 brought in by nominations, more than $2,000 from ticket sales, $600 from selected contestant fees and a few other side projects, including a rebate night and participating in a local trash pick up, it is safe to say ASA topped their goal of raising $3,200.
What matters the most to some sisters of ASA, though, is not the Dating Game itself, but what the money raised goes towards. Each year ASA raises money to sponsor the Murray, Calloway County Toys for Tots dinner.
The chapter works with the local elementary and middle schools to compile a list of less fortunate families seeking assistance with Christmas necessities.
After the children are selected, the sisterhood receives the children’s wish lists and members of the sorority get to play the part of Santa’s elves as they run around Wal-Mart to purchase everything that can be found on the children’s list.
Once the gifts are wrapped, ASA prepares a dinner for the children and their families, where they decorate a tree and fill the room with Christmas spirit.
This year’s newest addition to the dinner is Alpha Sigma Alpha member, Emily Duff who will be singing Christmas carols to help bring the spirit of Christmas to life, along with Santa paying a visit to the children to distribute the gifts that ASA has prepared.
Senior marketing major Emily Baker said the attendance and compliments provided after the event were all positive.
“We couldn’t be more pleased with the feedback we have received and I can’t wait to see this become yet another outstanding Murray State tradition,” said Baker, ASA’s philanthropy chairwoman who made the Dating Game possible.
Junior agriculture systems and technology major Matt McReynolds, who participated as a main contestant in the singles round, said his experience throughout the event was great and thinks it brought in more attendance than the dodgeball tournament would have.
“The key to a good philanthropy is starting a tradition and sticking with it,” McReynolds said. “I think this will eventually be an event that every year people get excited for.”
Looking forward to next year already, Alpha Sigma Alpha expresses their gratitude and appreciation to everyone that attended and has played a part in making Toys for Tots one to be remembered this year for the deserving families in the Murray community.