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A Weekend at CollegeFest 2012

This past weekend, thousands of college students piled into the Hynes Convention Center to attend CollegeFest, a two-day, fun-filled, back-to-school celebration. Enticed by the prospect of “free swag” as well as live musical performances and even a few celebrity sightings (read: Kel Mitchell!), college students found it hard to resist the festival’s relatively cheap ticket price of $15.

Students easily spent hours traversing the booths, playing games, nabbing loot, and dancing to the electronic beats reverberating from the stages. Sponsors frequently gave T-shirts and other products in exchange for liking their Facebook pages or creating an account on their websites. Dance groups from local colleges performed on the side stage, and live musical guest on the main stage included Wale and The Cataracs (“Like a G6”). On Sunday, actor-comedian Kel Mitchell (All That, Kenan & Kel) arrived for a meet-and-greet session and hosted games on the stage afterwards. Last but not least, thanks to the vast array of sponsors—from Microsoft to Jamba Juice—students could not help but leave 10 swag-filled pounds heavier and pumped for CollegeFest 2013.

For my friends Anna, Maryanne, and I, this was our first time going to CollegeFest. On Day 1, we were able to score a free pair of Amethyst jeans, various T-shirts, several full-sized beverages, and more. Maryanne managed to win a free dinner to Fire & Ice in a game of Pong. On Day 2, I even got the chance to hop into a money booth (yes, a real money booth), where I spent one minute snatching desperately at flying dollar bills like my life depended on it. In the end, I won $21—pretty sweet, huh?! Overall, we had a blast and cannot wait to go again next year.

3 Tips:
1. Students began lining up over an hour before doors opened, so be prepared to arrive early.
2. Bring a backpack! Seriously.
3. Wear comfortable walking shoes.

Check out more photos from the event:

Psyched about free Jamba Juice

This year, Amethyst Jeans gave away free T-shirts, bags, and jeans. Pictured above, students line up to redeem their loot from the pink “jean machine.”

Jesse Wilkins and Paul Hastay of DJ Doubletake strike a pose.

Kel: “Y’all love orange soda?!”

DJ Doubletake performing onstage

The Cataracs perform, and CollegeFest 2012 ends with a bang, quite literally.

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