ROC Fest kicks off with splash

Roberto+Hodge+%7C+The+Daily+Eastern+News%0ABrian+Anzures%2C+freshman+history+major%2C+swims+across+Campus+Pond+during+Rocfest+Monday+afternoon.

Roberto Hodge | The Daily Eastern News Brian Anzures, freshman history major, swims across Campus Pond during Rocfest Monday afternoon.

Luis Martinez, Staff Reporter

Coming out on top Monday at the annual ROCFest boat relay race across the Campus Pond, after a five-year dry spell, was Douglas Hall’s silver and pink boat.

Participants had to rush across the pond in boats made exclusively out of cardboard and duct tape, whether it was to stay afloat or just to win.

Each hall had a minimum of three people from their hall line up their boats on one side.

While the teams managed to paddle across the hall during their first run, one by one boats started coming apart, as the water made its way into the cardboard.

The race quickly changed when paddlers had to improvise to continue the race, while their boats fell apart.

Many resorted to using their arms as paddles.

The teams had to get their residence hall boats across the campus pond three times, with two members pushing the boat into the water and one paddling across the pond.

Once a team member made it across the pond, a new member had to paddle back.

If a team’s boat sank, then a team member had to carry the boat out of the water and throw it away.

Thomas Hall’s team said they spent a few hours during the past few days in order to prepare for the race.

The members of the Douglas Hall team said they were excited since this was their first victory in five years.

“We feel great,” one of the team members said. “Just a little tired.”

The Douglas Hall team experienced difficulties with their boat at the start of the race. “The only problem we had was the start when we went down to push and it wouldn’t move,” a Douglas team member said.

Despite their boat difficulties, members said things went better than they expected.

“It actually felt like being in a real boat,” one of the members said. “It was better than last year when our boat fell apart halfway through the first lap.”

Kadie Peterson, the Residence Hall Association vice president, said she felt ROCFest was off to a good start with the boat relay race.

“It went pretty well, we didn’t have to use lifeguards,” she said. “Most of the boats finished, with the exception of three but it went really well.”

Peterson said she was surprised by the outcome.

”I did not expect Douglas to win,” she said. “It was a great turn around.”

Peterson said she hopes to see a good turnout at this year’s ROCFest.

“If attendance is anything like what happened today, this ROCFest is going to go amazing.”

Roughly 100 people circled the pond to see the various teams either sink or to cheer their hall’s boat on.

The winner for the best-looking boat will be announced during the next RHA meeting.

ROCFest will continue with a bingo game from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday in the Lawson Hall basement.

Luis Martinez can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]