The Student News Site of Bethel University

The Clarion

The Student News Site of Bethel University

The Clarion

The Student News Site of Bethel University

The Clarion

Skating to connection

Bethel University Student Life held a 90s-themed Roller Rave with the goal of building community.
Alanna Voelker
Freshman Laura Hagel gets used to her skates as she skates around the makeshift “rink” for the first time.

Daniel Parkin strutted out onto the stage, microphone in hand and fake tattoo saying “90s” on his face. The Underground was full of students skating, singing and laughing. The song “The Anthem” by Good Charlotte came on over the speakers and Parkin starts to belt out the lyrics shown on screen as students began to skate up to the stage to cheer him on and dance with him.

For the past three years, Parkin has been the resident director of Edgren Hall. He has worked in Student Life for seven years, and tonight, with the teamwork of all the other RDs and resident assistants, he saw months of coordinating skate rentals, finding slushie machines and working with event services finally pay off.

On Friday night, Student Life held its spring event, a 90s-themed Roller Rave with skating, karaoke and flashing rave lights. The event had a turnout of upward of 100 students stopping by throughout the night, a success in Parkin’s eyes.

“I started to notice there was a decline in attendance at events,” Parkin said. “Then COVID hit and I think a lot of people desired to have more connection.” 

It is really fun, and you don’t know who you’ll meet or how much fun you will have.

— Laura Hagel, freshman

Parkin believes that Student Life’s main goal post-COVID is to bring the Bethel community closer together and get students out of their comfort zones.

Freshman Laura Hagel attended this event and was pressured by her friends to take part in karaoke of the song “Dancing Queen” by ABBA. Though there weren’t many participants at first, after the first few singers, students began to line up to get their names on the list. “Before He Cheats” by Carrie Underwood, “Haven’t Met You Yet” by Michael Bublé and “Ice Ice Baby” by Vanilla Ice were a few of the many songs sung throughout the night, all of which the crowd would join in on. Many students seemed nervous at first, singing quietly and not moving around much, but the students would quickly get hyped up, getting louder and dancing. When they walked off the stage, they smiled wide.

“It is really fun, and you don’t know who you’ll meet or how much fun you will have,” Hagel said. 

Bodien RA Aireia Parker helped with the event’s setup and running stations throughout the night. She believes that the reason Student Lifecares so much about events like these is to bring Bethel students together — to feel like Bethel is truly their home.

“I think that we are just trying to build community within Bethel,” Parker said. “Doing stuff like this gets people out and doing something fun, and that brings community.”

Parkin came back out a second time to close out the night with “The Reason” by Hoobastank. He sang with a hand on his heart out to the students who circled the stage. He finished off with a large smile and thanked all the students.

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