After the circus has packed up and gone away

IMG_0034Photo by: Mason Farnan

Story by: India Taylor

Gambling, dancing, eating and socializing—all are part of Casino Night here at Queens. The girls get dolled up and the men look dapper. Students come together and experience one of the greatest traditions of the year. The Campus Union Board works hard from start to finish. For incoming students, Casino Night is the first big event of the semester.

The theme this year was Cirque de Royale inspired by Cirque de Soleil, the well-known performing company that is a half circus-half street performers. CUB decorated columns with ribbon, brought in a fake tiger, and placed a circus ring in the lobby of the Levine Center. There was a fire breather and woman on stilts. The excitement level was high and low throughout the night, according to some students.

“The best thing was really getting dressed for the part,’’ said Kennedy Lewis, a freshman at Queens. “The vibe was great since everyone was having a nice time winning fake money. Probably it was more the thrill of fake gambling!”

Others noted that the night was memorable because of the people they went with and the experience of seeing all of the decorations and everyone nicely dressed and all together.

But not everyone had good things to say about Casino Night. One senior, who asked to remain anonymous because she did not want to publicly criticize the evening, said that she was disappointed in the choice of venue and the positioning of the dance floor.

“The Levine Center was a bad choice of venue,’’ she said. “The dance floor placement was odd and spread out.’’

Jamal Tate, a junior, said his only complaint had to do with limitations on his gambling. “It was a great experience overall,’’ he said. “However, I felt it would’ve been better if they had not run out of poker chips upon my arrival.’’

In the past, Casino Night has been held in the Dining Hall. This year there was another option for a venue as the Levine Center opened. Taylor Pinckney, a junior, was on the committee this year to plan Casino Night and mentioned the difficulty of breaking tradition and hosting Casino Night somewhere else. This year, the committee for Casino night began secretly planning in late April and revealed the theme in August.

“The most difficult part was definitely transforming the Levine Center into our idea of a vintage Royal circus,’’ she said. “Since Casino Night has traditionally been held in the dining hall, it was a risk for us to try out a new location, so we had to work extra hard since it had never been done in this location.” Pinckney said that despite extensive efforts to have the lights turned off in the Grand Lobby, the bright lights were only slightly dimmed by the end of the evening.

Students were not shy to share their feelings in regards to Casino Night. But after seeing the copious pictures uploaded to Instagram and Facebook, showing students smiling and hanging out at the party, it seemed as though everyone had had a good time.

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Published by students of Queens University of Charlotte, 1900 Selwyn Avenue, Charlotte, N.C. 28274.