The Rites of Spring fund raiser began in 1969 and was spearheaded by Mike Hatcher. Mike was a self taught pianist who could pound out some mean ragtime, and a computer nut way back when cards were punched with the necessary information, stacked and fed into a computer about the size of a Volkswagen. Mike spearheaded the event and in his ever-zealous way, drove us all nuts with every minute detail. He also made it a rousing success, raising $3,500.00! A huge amount in those days, it instantly took us out of the red and into "fat city!"
I, as CW's Chairman, originally pushed for the name Spring Riots, but was deftly and unanimously overruled by the entire CW Board. No sense of humor, that group! The Rites of Spring took over the majority of the Student Union as well as the basement of the old Women's Gym (called the Student Union Annex) which stood between the Student Union and the Administration Building. The Friday night extravaganza included three bands and 20+ carnival booths created by the fraternities, sororities, residence halls, and student groups. It was a rousing success...and Mike celebrated by quaffing what we believed to be numerous "sodas", and was escorted homeward by a less "spirited" friend.
When you consider that our other fund raisers included The Ugly Man Contest (in which students voted for a picture of their favorite homely "toad" sponsored by student groups), selling mistletoe for 10 cents a bag, and Two Bits for Camp Wildcat (we begged people to throw their
The truth be told -- the Rites of Spring was taken over by the Greeks after a few years, even though the culprits won't admit it. It was renamed Spring Fling and has been a huge success for over 25 years.
They owe Camp Wildcat BIG!!
-- Grant Smith ('67-'69