‘Pie a Dancer’ raises money and awareness for dance team

Hunter O. LyleSports Editor

Just on the other side of the glass of the Dunkin Donuts in the Michael J. Adanti Student Center, enthusiastic members of the dance team called and beckoned to students passing by, eagerly trying to get them to shove a pie in their face.

As a way of fundraising, many clubs and organizations turn to popup events like pumpkin carvings, community painting nights or theatre shows. For the Southern dance team however, the chose to rely on the oldest form of slap-stick comedy: a pie in the face.

The origin of the idea came from social work major Hannah Bowen, a junior and co-captain of the dance team, who said she had seen successful “pieing” events on campus from other organizations, and wanted to try it on for size.

“We knew [events like this] were a thing in the past,” said Bowen. “We saw the sororities and fraternities doing it, and it just looked like fun and it seemed successful.”

Psychology major Mackenzie Scutari, a freshman, said she stopped by the event to support her friends on the dance team,
especially since she had the chance to pie a couple of them at the same time.

“I was walking to class and I’m friends with Rylea Armad,” said Scutari, “and I figured it was a great opportunity.”

While the majority of the dance team was trying to get passing students to join in on the fun, one dancer, chemistry major Rylea Armad, a freshman, said she volunteered to be the one actually getting pied to help bond with the team.

“I’m just a newcomer [to the dance team],” said Armad, “so I’m just trying to learn the ropes and get the hang of things. Throw myself in wherever I can.”

Armad, who had taken 10 pies to the face in just the first 40 minutes of the event, said that even though she was cold because of the wind, and sticky because of the whipped cream still clinging to her face, she was still happy to come out and support her team.

The dance team started fundraising in early September, hosting events such as Taco Tuesdays at Chipotle, a TGI Friday’s event at TGI Friday’s restaurant and multiple bake sales, in order to afford either a trip to Nationals or new uniforms.

Along with the face-toface fundraising events, the team has also turned to online fundraising. Using SnapRace, an online fundraising website similar to GoFundMe, the team has raised over $1,500 of their $2,000 group goal according to the official dance team SnapRace website.

“We’re still iffy about Nationals. We have a new coach this year and she doesn’t know if it’s something she wants to take on in her first year of coaching,” said Bowen. “If the money we make isn’t going towards Nationals, it’s going to new uniforms. We have these crop-tops that we’ve gotten made; they’re long sleeve, they’re beautiful but we just don’t have the money for them right now.”

Psychology major Jelise Nimmons, a sophomore and co-captain of the dance team said that if the team wants to go to Nationals, which will be hosted in the spring in Las Vegas, Nev. they would need to raise about $1,000 for each one of the 15 dancers on the team.

“We want to be more known and we want to make it known that we work very, very hard to get where we are,” said Bowen. “We have a lot of practice time. We just work a lot and we just want to see everyone come and support us.”

Photo credit: Hunter O. Lyle

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