Rain didn’t deter the fifth annual Foam Bash last Friday. Unlike previous foam parties, which were held at the Bell Tower Plaza, this year’s party took place on University Village’s lawn. Other changes to the tradition this year included more family-oriented activities and an attempt to break a world record.
This year, the Nontraditional Student Center collaborated with the Weber State University Student Association to bring a family-friendly aspect to the party.
“I don’t know if it was the first or second year it started,” said Debbie Cragun, coordinator of the Nontraditional Student Center, “(but) we actually did a pirate movie at the duck pond.”
Cragun said the first attempt was successful, with a turnout of around 200 people. Due to lack of funding and staff, the center has been unable to hold this event again until now.
“I mean, I was here since 7 this morning; I’ll be here till 9 tonight,” Cragun said. “My staff can’t do that. So they do the daytime and I do the nighttime. So really, it’s just a matter of staffing. Having WSUSA provide for all the families and the students that are nontrad, it really allows us to provide that broad scope every student deserves.”
Because of the rain, the Joe Muscelino Band, which the Nontraditional Student Center had scheduled to play for the families and students from 6-8 p.m., canceled. Cragun said the band has been rescheduled for the family dance at homecoming.
Airbrush tattoos, a jump house and an inflatable water slide were the main attractions for the children and their parents. Many children went through the makeshift tattoo parlor multiple times.
“Yeah, I got the Chinese symbol for love and a butterfly,” said Nala Wilkinson, daughter of Stephanie Wilkinson, who is a freshman at WSU.
Although Wilkinson said she was happy to have an activity to do with her children, she also said she was not impressed with the lack of setup.
“If it says there’s going to be food, there should be food,” Wilkinson said. “If the event starts at 6, then the event should be ready at 6. It didn’t rain that hard.”
George Van Etson, a junior majoring in athletic training, said he was glad he had something to do with his children when his plans fell through.
“I was kind of bummed when I went on the Weber site,” Van Etson said. “There’s nothing about it, like the calendar or anything. The only reason I knew about it (was) Debbie.”
By 8 p.m., everything was set up, and the traditional students and community members began to filter in. As they entered the party area, guests did not have to pay, but were asked to sign a list for an event later that night.
“It was just an idea that some of the group thought of, like, ‘What if we could break the world record for the most people skipping at a single time?’” said Thomas Judd, programming director for the WSUSA. “It was supposed to be its own event, so we were like, ‘Let’s just combine babies and make it a part of this.’”
While waiting for the skipping to begin, students danced, got tattooed, went on the slide and, of course, ran through the foam pit. Popcorn, snow cones and churros were available to snack on, and many students lined up for the Wizzer — a spinning carnival ride that riders operate themselves — and an inflatable boxing ring in which participants tried to knock each other off pedestals.
“I think that the dance is really cool,” said freshman Parker Shaw on his way to the foam pit. “It’s cool they attract outside of class, ’cause we don’t get to do that as much.”
The music stopped for the skipping around 10 p.m. Students circled up and attempted to skip at once.
“What we did is try to break a world record,” said Mike Diamond, vice president of programming in the WSUSA. “So we documented as best we can. We’re going to send that information into Guinness Book of World Records, and hopefully in a couple months they’re going to send us back the good news that we broke a record.”
Diamond said the WSUSA still needs to count how many people attended. The record for most people skipping at once is currently 3,105.
It began raining an hour before midnight, which was when the party was scheduled to end, but the DJ continued a while longer before calling it quits.
“It’s pretty crazy, but it’s fun,” said Gage Thomas, a freshman majoring in zoology, about the party.