On the 27th of August, 2017, I moved into my dorm at the University of Delaware and quickly prepared to be a college student for the first time. That weekend, I went to my first-ever college party! Specifically, it was a weekend block party – an ice-breaker for all the new freshmen to connect with the upperclassmen and really be welcomed into the campus community. As a freshman, it’s already intimidating coming into a new environment. You can easily feel like small fish in a sea of thousands. But, as a minority, it’s even tougher. On campus, there is a community called the Center for Black Culture, and their main purpose is to bring the African-American community together, so that the sea doesn’t feel so large.
The party started off as a block-party meant to introduce new students to what the community has to offer. The Dark Arts and Afrodisiac Dance groups did amazing performances, followed by performances from all the fraternities and sororities, like the Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority and Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, who all did a phenomenal job of hyping everybody up and getting them excited for life on the UD campus. We got to walk around and talk to different people, but everyone really just wanted to dance. When “Bodak Yellow” by Cardi B, or “Control” by Maleek Berry came on, people would jump out of their seats and run up to the stage and just start dancing. There was food (hot dogs and chicken wings, anyone?), music and all around good times, all leading up to the after-party held later that night.
The after-party, called the “Bad And Boujee Party”, was held at Trabant. Doors opened at 11p.m., and when I showed up with my roommate 10 minutes before the doors opened, the people who were already at the door were dressed to the nines. Six-inch heels, big hoops, near-perfect weaves and wigs and bodycon dresses stood in front of me. Everyone looked absolutely amazing.
There was a slight lull in the beginning as people were just trickling in, though my friends and I did not care much. We started dancing the minute that music came on, but the party did not really start until after midnight. The lights were low, lots of people were on the floor, shoes were coming off already (mine came off about fifteen to twenty minutes after I showed up) and it got wild. Quickly. There was definitely a club atmosphere to it: lights out, short dresses, pulsing music and lots of dancing. A common thread that I noticed at this party along with subsequent parties after, is the whole grinding/twerking situation. Usually, girls would be dancing and guys would come up behind them and they would start dancing on each other…some are more aggressive than others. Most people didn’t mind it and it made for a great experience…I suppose. For me, I am much more content with dancing with my friends without random hands on my waist trying to grind up on me. There were a couple of instances where that exact scenario would happen: I would be losing myself in the music and I would feel a strange pair of hands on my waist, then I would slide to the other side and keep dancing like nothing happened.
One thing that I did not like about the party was the random break in dancing for the fraternities. It was not too big of a deal at first, but every now and again people would part and typically the Alphas, Sigmas or Kappas would step-dance their way through the crowd with phone flashes everywhere, probably videoing it to go on Snapchat. But then, it got frequent. People would push people out of the way, stepping on their feet and obnoxiously blowing whistles in people’s faces and ears to make way for Greek Life to do their line-dances. My friends and I were getting annoyed because we came to dance and have fun to the lively hip-hop and dancehall beats, not watch them do the choreography that they did earlier that day. Plus, the energy kind of died because of it, especially as they kept hogging up the dance floor every 10 minutes. To me, it simply got really old, really fast.
Other than that, it was a great time. I met and danced with new people and the energy was off-the-charts. I was dance-happy and full of energy by the time the party ended at 2:00a.m. My friend and I had an unfortunate run-in with four guys who were creeping around the back of Trabant. Which, lesson learned – it’s better to gauge a creepy person while walking away than saying nothing and walking away. I had my car on-campus at the time, so I drove my friend home and returned to pick up my roommate so she wouldn’t run into those guys. She did anyway, but no harm done. So, all in all, it was a great first weekend and a fun way to be welcomed into the school before classes started that following Tuesday.