The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

Water balloon fight soaks Quad

Photo by Patrick Hansell for The Lafayette
About 200 students attended Tuesday’s event on the Quad.

Just two months after the snowball skirmish of the century, the Quad was again turned into a battleground — this time with reusable water balloons.

“Everyone was having a fantastic time,” Dexter Kennedy ‘26 said. “No one was dismayed by the temperature of the water.”

Kennedy added that the water balloons were “a little colder than I thought.”

The water balloon fight on Tuesday, like the snowball fight in February, was the brainchild of Remy Oktay ’24, who used $5,000 from the Lafayette Activities Forum and the remaining $500 of his Creative and Performing Arts Scholar fund to purchase 2,500 reusable water balloons, several large black tubs and hoses to feed them.

The goal of the event was to “get people outdoors having fun, just being kids again,” according to Oktay. He reported that approximately 200 students attended on a day that saw on-campus temperatures around 80 degrees for the second time this year.

Students went to great lengths to make a splash at the water balloon fight. Some used slingshots to launch balloons as far as halfway across the Quad, targeting those who hid in trees, for example. Others took to using the tanks themselves as a watery weapon by dunking their friends in them, while others still removed the hoses from the tanks and drenched any combatants unlucky enough to be within spraying distance.

Oktay said that the balloons might make a reappearance on the last day of classes or during finals week. Kennedy welcomed this possibility.

“I think people would absolutely go nuts for it,” Kennedy said.

The water balloon fight was more organized than the spontaneous snowball fight two months ago. Oktay submitted a proposal to the Division of Student Life for funding, which then forwarded him to the Lafayette Activities Forum. 

“Our [contribution] was the water balloons, the money and then we had someone on our team make the [marketing] video,” said Sarah Smith ‘24, the president of the Lafayette Activities Forum. She emphasized that students are welcome to ask the organization to collaborate on similar ideas if it is done with “equal partnership.”

The balloons were purchased from Soppycid, the inventor of the contraptions, for a discounted bulk price. The balloons’ magnets open and close automatically; some students discovered that they could connect several balloons, the largest observed being six balloons in one.

Oktay said that he aims to make the event an annual occurrence at the end of the spring semester. Smith confirmed that the Lafayette Activities Forum has kept all of the balloons and will continue to sponsor the event in the future.

“I’m excited to see what it becomes,” Oktay said. “I’m really happy with all the fun people were having.”

The Creative and Performing Arts Scholar program, or CaPa, which partially funded the water balloon brawl, provides students with $7,500 “over four years to develop their creativity” through “projects that not only expand the CaPA scholar’s experience with their art but also impact the community by igniting dialogue on campus,” according to its website.

Oktay said he was one of the few students accepted into the program after their freshman year via faculty recommendation. Other projects he has spent his $7,500 on are the campus tree swings, glass-blowing classes, starting a custom wooden pen business and coordinating a dinner with strangers.

Oktay estimated that preparation for the water balloon project took between 20 and 25 hours over three months.

For the event, there were several water filling stations set up across the Quad, including outside of Pardee Hall, Skillman Library and Kirby House. The event began at about 3:15 p.m. and ran until approximately 4:15 p.m.

Some students complained that the event should have begun at 4 p.m. after classes ended, but Oktay started the event an hour earlier to allow for athletes to participate.

Students showed up anyway, many in street clothes instead of bathing suits.

“I should’ve changed, but that’s okay,” Jonathan Moya ‘25 said during the event. “It’s really nice. I’m out here with my friends.”

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About the Contributors
Andreas Pelekis
Andreas Pelekis, Assistant News Editor
Tennis addict.
Selma O'Malley
Selma O'Malley, News Editor
Waiting for someone to write a sitcom about a college newspaper.
Trebor Maitin
Trebor Maitin, Managing Editor
Pennsylvania enthusiast.
Patrick Hansell
Patrick Hansell, Staff Photographer

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