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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Undie Runners bare down for charity

Ernie Somoza / Arizona Daily Wildcat 

Students run around the UA Mall for the first annual Zona Zoo Undie Run where students come wearing clothes they plan to donate so that they can bare down before joining the run.
Ernie Somoza
Ernie Somoza / Arizona Daily Wildcat Students run around the UA Mall for the first annual Zona Zoo Undie Run where students come wearing clothes they plan to donate so that they can bare down before joining the run.

The combination of college students and the opportunity to run around in their underwear made for the first Zona Zoo Bear Down Undie Run.

On Saturday, UA students met in front of Old Main at 6:30 p.m. to strip to their underwear before running around campus in the name of charity.

A DJ was on hand during the event to provide runners with entertainment while news cameras caught the dash on tape.

Before the run began, students were encouraged to place the clothes they wore to the event in a large bin placed in front of Old Main, while participants prepped themselves for the idea of being partially nude on campus.

The event benefited students of the Tucson Unified School District with donated clothes.

“”It’s a fun event, and it’s for a good cause,”” said Megan West, a psychology senior. “”People need the clothes more than I do, so I decided to donate some.””

Aside from the philanthropic aspect of the event, many students participated in the run simply to have fun and promote school spirit.

“”It’s humor, sexiness and fun all rolled into one,”” said Tim Sullivan, a psychology senior.

For some, the idea of baring it all was what attracted them to the event. Alex Baine, a freshman and psychology major said, “”This is the closest to public nudity I can get.””

While nudity wasn’t exactly allowed, underwear was available to runners in the UofA Bookstore for purchase three days prior to the event. Zona Zoo chose to sell underwear, boxers and sports bras to participants.

Amber Helms, an elementary education sophomore, said she chose to purchase the underwear because she “”wanted to support the Zona Zoo and promote spirit.””

However, not all runners elected to buy the underwear, which ranged from $9 to $20.

“”I have my own underwear; it wasn’t necessary to buy more,”” Baine said.

The initial goal set forth by the Zona Zona and ASUA coordinators was for 1,000 students to participate in the run. While that goal was not met, Dominick San Angelo said the event was still a success.

“”We fell rather short of the goal, but it was a successful night overall; people had a good time,”” he said.

San Angelo said the reason that participation fell short was because the date they chose for the run.

“”That Saturday was a really busy day; there were two fraternity parties, a sorority semi-formal, the Chain Gang orientation and other things, happening all at the same time. It was also right before finals,”” San Angelo said.

Most participants considered the run, which lasted a mere four minutes for the first finisher, a worthwhile cause.

Jay Hall, a political science and Middle Eastern studies sophomore said, “”It was a little cold but completely worth the experience. We are all sort of in this time where things are getting stressful and something like an undie run eases some of the stress.””

With a majority of colleges and universities on the West Coast adapting an annual undie run, San Angelo is confident that the Bear Down Undie Run event will continue to be a tradition at the UA.

“”It was a fun event that ran smoothly. There were no problems. The only thing that could have gone better was attendance, but that was a direct result of the day it happened,”” Hall said. “”ASU does an annual undie run and we always want to beat ASU, so I think a UA run should become a tradition.””

As the event came to a close, many students changed into extra clothes they brought with them, while others walked off in the their underwear. Students wearing the Zona Zoo brand had the opportunity to go to the Chipotle on University Boulevard to get a free burrito.

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