Oklahoma Christian University’s students use hand-made crafts to usher in the autumn season.
- The fall festival was the first of its kind to be held on campus.
- Both individuals and clubs were able to have booths, selling things ranging from pie and salsa to homemade journals and clay figurines.
- Student musicians took the stage, adding to the ambiance.
EDMOND, Okla. Students on Oklahoma Christian University’s campus participated in a craft fair last Saturday. The festival, which was the first of its kind held on campus, highlighted the creative talents from the campus’ best knitters, bakers, and clay figurine makers.
Abigail Townsend, the Student Government Association’s executive secretary, was responsible for the planning and executing of the event. “Students had come to Student Life and resident assistants and expressed an interest in having an opportunity to display and sell things that they had made by hand,” Townsend said. “I heard about the student interest and thought immediately of craft festivals I’d been to back home. I thought it would be neat to attempt to have something similar here on campus with OC students.”
The festival took several weeks to plan, and Townsend used the presence of social service clubs to promote the event as a fundraiser. Both individuals and clubs had booths in the University’s forum, a popular location for students to meet with their friends. The forum was the optimal location for Townsend, who wanted to maintain an outdoor theme.
Daniel Wheat, a freshman that designs customized long boards, had a booth for other students to see his work. “I found out about the fall festival through an email that I received. The members of student government were looking for people who make things.”
Wheat is now personalizing long boards for one of the school’s social service clubs.
The festival also allowed people to raise money for their clubs. The social service clubs Iota Kappa Phi, Omega Psi Omicron and Pi Zeta Phi made different crafts to sell to fellow students. “We are lucky enough to have inside connections to many of the unsaid and unnoticed workings of the school,” said Seth Newell, vice-president of Omega. “We used some of these to get in. We sold baked goods mostly. Jason Ford made Brazilian coffee cake, Steve Bagwell made brownies, Andrew Stevenson made chocolate chip cookies, I made some pies, and Jordan Nealeigh made artistic carvings from foam cups.”
Another student organization, Sigma Tau Delta, was able to use the combined efforts of its members to sell cake balls, magnets, journals made from recycled materials, and note cards. The group will use their profits to travel to an English conference later in the year.
Musicians add to the ambiance
Students were able to visit the festival from 3-6 on Saturday afternoon, and live music gave the scene more ambiance. Several students played both original and cover songs. The performers included Lynn Ashby, Carly Conklin, Nathan Wheat, Seth Newell, Derek Gates, Danny Davis, Will Kooi, Wil Norton, Ben Rawlins, and John Mayes.
While the festival was an aspect of campus community that had never been used before, the students that participated were pleased with the results. “We made money, so that was a pleasant surprise,” Newell said.
The positive impact that the festivities had on the campus will ensure that it can become a tradition for the students at Oklahoma Christian. After all of her work, Townsend is optimistic about the fall festival. “I was very happy with the student reaction. We had students who were making things, playing music at the festival, and also students who supported and came out to the festival. I think it’s definitely something that we should do again.”