By ANTHONY VIGNA
As Ramapo students piled into the Laurel courts on October 3rd, they were greeted to an environment unlike anything they have ever seen before on campus. Hay bales were scattered around the floor, images of a saloon were hung up on the walls, and country music that was blasting in the area. It was what students were calling a “Po’ Down”.
The Po’ Down Throw Down was a country event inspired by the name of Miley Cyrus’ song, “Hoedown Throwdown”. The event, created by both the Village and Laurel Hall, featured square dancing, a country buffet, raffles, a hula hoop contest, mason jars that could bepainted, and a mechanical bull that students could ride on. The attendants donned plaid and wore boots, bandanas, and cowboy hats.
Creating the Event
John Sapida, 21-year-old international studies major, is a resident assistant that helped run the event. He said that the event was a part of a collaboration that both the Village and Laurel staff run every year.
“Last year, we did a collaborative event based on the 1990s,” he said. “We had a lot of theme ideas for this year, but the country theme came on top.”
The event’s main biggest hook was, without a doubt, the mechanical bull. There were long lines for this attraction, as there was a contest going on to see who could last the longest on it without falling off. The top three bull riders received trophies and prizes accordingly.
The mechanical bull was not for the weak of heart. It rocked back and forth viciously, throwing anyone who wasn’t skilled enough to the floor and taunting them with a loud creaking noise. Regardless, students dressed up as cowboys and cowgirls tested their luck against this mechanical beast.
“The mechanical bull was the first thing that we thought of,” Sapida said. “I am really pleased with how people are liking it so far, and it’s only going to get better.”
The booming country music encapsulated the area, leaving everyone in a trance-like state. It drew everyone together, almost hypnotically, into a line dance when the DJ played Rednex’s song, “Cotton-Eyed Joe.”
“I really enjoy country,” Sapida said. “It’s a guilty pleasure of mine.”
Attending the Event
Parker Tubman, a 21-year-old American studies major, was attending the event as a commuter on campus. He found himself wanting to go to the event because of how unique it was to him.
“Other events at Ramapo get boring because they are always doing the same thing,” he said. “This event is something completely different than other events I have seen on campus.”
The event attracted crowds of people towards the buffet, which was full of country themed food. The smell of corn, wings, and chicken was irresistible to hungry Po’ Down participants.
“If there is free food at an event, I will go,” Tubman said. “The buffet at the event offers so much variety, and it’s all really good country food.”
Cowboys and Cowgirls competed, ate, and danced together all through the night. The event seemingly stopped time itself as it continued to provide tons of thrills and excitement, while also uniting all fans of country into one area.
“The event is three hours long, so people that may be busy could still come,” Tubman said. “I think that is a good idea because it helps bring people together.”