Party on Main Quad kicks off Homecoming Week


Jacob Slabosz

Students fly out of the bouncy house during the Party on Main Quad event hosted by the Illini Union Board and the Student Alumni Ambassadors on Monday.

By Aarushi Aggrwal, Contributing Writer

Students walking to the Main Quad on the afternoon of Monday, Oct. 10, expected a typical sight. They thought of the work they had to do; a busy week in the midst of midterm season lay ahead.

Then, a question arose: what’s that huge inflatable blue man doing in front of the Illini Union? Is that a bouncy castle?

Then, the realization sets in. It’s Homecoming Week! Work can wait. The bouncy castle on the Main Quad cannot.

This was all part of a party hosted by the Illini Union and organized by the Illini Union Board and the Student Alumni Ambassadors. Everyone was welcome to the two-hour party, and excitement was pulsing throughout the Main Quad.

The event had everything. A lively DJ, a fantastic bouncy castle, bull-riding, Toxic Meltdown and of course, delicious food. Vansh Raaj Jain, freshman in Engineering, said the event was one of the best he’d been to.

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    “I never thought my college experience would have inflatables, which are just so nostalgic,” Jain said. “I came here because of a last-minute invite, and I’m so glad I did. It’s been a refreshing evening.”

    Robert Walker Jr., senior in LAS, is a part of the Homecoming Court. He believes that getting involved with campus events is the most important thing for all students.

    “Homecoming is a time here when — no matter whether you’re a freshman or an alum — we all come together to celebrate the University,” Walker said. “Today’s event is amazing, and my favorite activity has to be bull riding.”

    As Walker said, students from all years were seen celebrating. Ariah Booker, freshman in LAS, said she enjoyed the event, too. She said she was very excited and especially loved the music.

    “They’re playing Doja Cat, which is my favorite — great music,” Booker said. “Freshmen should just have as much fun as they can. Events like this are a fun way to flaunt our school spirit, which is incredible.”

    Organizing such events takes time, patience, hard work and energy. Nicholas Butirro, sophomore in DGS, is the director of traditional events with the Illini Union Board.

    “This is one of our biggest events this year, and it’s going really well,” Butirro said. “Our goal is to serve as many different students on campus as we can, and we hope everyone’s having a good time.”

    Homecoming Week can be a time full of joy, reminiscence, memories and school spirit. The party kicked Homecoming Week off well and has everyone looking forward to more events.

    Stephanie Lepak, junior in LAS, said this was her first time going to an event like this. She was happy with her decision to come and had some advice for freshmen.

    “Love the free food,” Lepak said. “My advice to freshmen would be to get out of their comfort zone and make the most out of their time here. It’s hard to find new friends and go to new places but have no fears and enjoy your time.”


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