On Thursday, Oct. 21, as the clocks neared 9:30 p.m., Westmont students flocked to Murchison Gym for the return of one of Westmont’s treasured events: Midnight Madness.
Midnight Madness is a pep rally-esque tradition which brings Westmont students together in anticipation of upcoming events, such as the imminent start of the basketball season.
The night included performances by student groups such as the cheer team. Cheer captain Francesca Montemurro said she and her team had “been preparing for Midnight Madness since the beginning of the semester.”
Other clubs also put their best foot forward. NSTEP, a student-run hip-hop dance club, captivated the audience’s attention with skill, coordination and attitude. The men’s acapella group, Ahh-Men, had multiple soloists who showed off their talent as well.
The performances and dunk competition added an extra edge to the event. Montemurro observed, “Midnight Madness offers an opportunity to watch your friends perform, or perform in front of friends, which overall raises school spirit!”
Midnight Madness is about more than just fun performances, though. It’s about uniting the Westmont community. “The main goal for this tradition, and really all of our other traditional and non-traditional events, is to bring the campus together. And, for Midnight Madness in particular, to showcase some of our talented athletic teams and clubs through their performances,” said Hannah Landrigan, Westmont Activities Council (WAC) member and publicity coordinator. “We hope that events like this one bring together people that maybe wouldn’t cross paths otherwise.”
In the fall of 2020, the tradition was put on hold as students could not gather in groups due to the COVID-19 pandemic. “I think this event had even more meaning this year because we have not been able to see in-person games in so long, and people might have forgotten how fun it is to go and support our teams,” said WAC event coordinator Frannie Guida.
As the college moves forward, rebuilding a sense of community and school spirit were some of the reasons the Westmont Activities Council put in so much effort to make this event a success. “Everyone is yearning for involvement, for community and for events where they can decompress and take a break from school with their friends, and we’re excited to be able to provide that again this year through WAC events,” commented Landrigan.
Landrigan encouraged the student body to “keep the energy coming,” because Midnight Madness is the first of many more community events. “We have much more to come for y’all!”