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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Spring Fling kicks off in two weeks

    Close to 30,000 people are expected to attend this year’s Spring Fling, the nation’s largest student-run carnival, which is celebrating its 33rd year.

    The carnival, which will be at Rillito Downs for the eighth year, will run April 12-15.

    Spring Fling enjoyed a successful run last year, and executive director Alex Manuel said organizers are hoping for the same success this year.

    “”Last year there was definitely a big advertising push, lots of billboards and radio commercials,”” Manuel said. “”We are trying to do the same thing this year.””

    The featured performer this year will be the band MetalHead. Local band Ryanhood will also be performing, as well as about 10 other local bands.

    Thirty-six booths run by about 3,000 UA students from different clubs on campus are planned for the event.

    “”A lot of clubs team up, though, so we actually have about 50 U of A clubs participating in the event,”” Manuel said.

    Clubs have their choice of finding a sponsor and using one of 18 original booths, or using one of the carnival company’s 18 booths.

    According to the Spring Fling Web site, clubs raised a combined total of $80,000 during the four-day event last year.

    “”We usually pair up with a fraternity and all the money we raised goes to one of our philanthropies,”” said Elyse Carlsen, a finance junior and Sigma Kappa sorority member.

    Manuel said all the booths are already booked, and there is even a waiting list for those who missed out but still want a Spring Fling booth.

    Sixty-five percent of the 30,000 people who usually attend the event are between the ages of 13 and 24 years old.

    “”We are really trying to push advertising on the UA campus this year so we can get as many students to participate as possible,”” Manuel said.

    Aside from the 3,000 club volunteers during Spring Fling, there are also about 400 students who volunteer as staff members.

    “”Spring Fling is great,”” Carlsen said. “”It’s such a cool event for UA students and Tucson as a whole.””

    Manuel said he and his committee have everything almost taken care of because most of their deadlines were about a week ago.

    “”The main things we have to do now for the next two weeks are finalize contracts, have booth meetings, do some cashier training and make some last-minute purchases,”” Manuel said. “”Other than that, we are pretty much done.””

    The carnival is open from 4 p.m. to midnight April 12-13 and from noon to midnight April 14-15.

    “”We are coming off one of Spring Fling’s biggest years and look to have an even more successful year,”” Manuel said.

    Students get in free with a student ID.

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