He’s Beauty and He’s Grace: Discussing Mr. Augustana 2018 with Allison Arvia

This Friday, January 12th at 8 pm is the annual Mr. Augustana pageant, which is put on every year by the ladies of Chi Alpha Pi to raise money for the American Cancer Society. Aside from being wildly entertaining, the past few shows have each raised about $3,000 or more for cancer research and treatment. The Mr. Augustana Pageant is a pronounced showcase of professional-level work among a group of very talented ladies.

I had an opportunity to sit down with Allison Arvia, president of Chi Alpha Pi, to discuss the pageant and her experience in more detail.

How long have the ladies of Chi Alpha Pi been organizing Mr. A?

“It’s been around for 15 to 17 years; they started it as a philanthropy for a fundraising event, and it worked so well that it’s become our annual fundraising project and we’ve been doing it ever since.”


What’s it like to be running the Mr. A pageant?

“Well, it’s a two-year position. I actually finished my position last year, but I'm filling in for the chair who is currently studying abroad. The planning is all year-round and it accumulates the week of, with lots of rehearsals with the guys and sorority members working on committees. It’s cool because you get to work with the entire campus and lots of on-campus groups, and it’s also nice because the entire sorority is involved so you have to work together to make it successful.”


What do you find to be the most challenging aspect?

“I think definitely the week-of is the hardest part, because you can plan as much as you want the months beforehand, but you never know what’s actually going to happen during the rehearsals and the night of the event. Working with everyone’s schedule and coordinating every contestant and every beat of the show is stressful, but very rewarding.”


What do you find to be the most rewarding aspect of the Mr. A pageant?

"Obviously, we raise money for a great cause, but I personally love working with everyone on an individual level and getting to know the contestants and the girls in my sorority since we have to work so closely together. I love getting to know the people and the talents of everyone involved. It’s an environment that challenges people and brings out the best in them."


Do you have a favorite memory of the pageant?

“I went to Mr. A when I was a freshman the year before I was a CAP, so that means a lot to me. I think my favorite memories of working the pageant was when I was a co-chair and was positioned backstage during the pageant to make sure everything was running smoothly with the boys. That was really fun because you get to see the boys working off each other and having fun. (Plus it’s fun to watch them try to learn the group dance; it’s a mess but it works out!)”


The Mr. Augustana Pageant starts at 8 pm on Friday, January 12th,  2018. Doors open at 7:30 pm; tickets are $5 in the Brew and $6 at the door.