by Gabriella Pisano ’18
With shimmering strands of lights streaming overhead, black and white curtains all around, and the cityscape of Providence in the background, Providence College’s second Black and White Ball commenced. Nearly 2,500 students flocked to the Peterson Recreation Center on Friday, February 23 to attend what is proving to be one of the Board of Programmers most popular events.
Last year, in honor of the centennial year, BOP along with other major clubs and organizations on campus, planned the first Black and White Ball. The event was especially unique not only because it was a celebration of the College’s centennial year, but also because it welcomed students of all grades.
Jamie Fugere ’18, a member of BOP’s Black and White Ball planning committee, said, “Since last year it was such a big event, we were nervous that people wouldn’t want to come this year either thinking it would be a repeat of last year or that it wouldn’t be as extravagant.” The worries of BOP were put to rest when approximately 2,500 tickets were sold, nearly the same amount as last year’s 2,600. While the Spring Concert is usually the BOP’s biggest event, with an average of 2,200 tickets sold, Black and White Ball’s popularity is making it one of BOP’s featured events.
“We’ve gotten so much positive feedback from students,” said Fugere. “It’s one of those dances that students stay at for longer than the single class dances. It’s special to invite the entire campus together in one place because we don’t do that a lot.”
Members of the Board of Programmers decided on the theme, “A Night in the City of Providence.” The transformation of Peterson into the city of Providence was accomplished by tying in key aspects of the city into the decorations. From the strands of lights resembling those on Westminster Street to the tapestry of the State House, the beauty of the city in which the College resides was highlighted.
“The best part about the dance was spending time with my friends from different clubs and organizations who weren’t from my grade,” said Allison Schmidt ’19. “The decorations were beautiful, the music was great, and it was a fun celebration to be together with amazing people.”
In addition to the decorations, the food set this dance apart from all of the others. A notable difference from last year was that the event fell on a Friday during Lent, meaning that meat was unable to be served. Fugere noted that when members of the planning committee first realized this they considered receiving a pardon from the bishop in order to serve meat.
Knowing that they wanted food that guests could quickly grab and go, they realized that there were a large variety of meatless options that fit into this category including soft pretzels, mozzarella sticks, fish sticks, and pizza.
Fugere noted that one of the top reactions from the event was positive feedback on the band, Sugarbabies. Playing hit songs including Bruno Mars’ “Treasure” and throwbacks such as blink-182’s “All The Small Things,” Sugarbabies had high energy that students felt powered the positive atmosphere of the night.
Kayla Krongel ’18 said, “It was great getting to dance with my friends to some of our favorite songs. The live band provided a lot of good vibes on Friday night.”
Fugere said that her favorite part of the event is the very beginning when students enter. “Watching people walk in and seeing the excitement on their faces is the best,” said Fugere. “We get to see the culmination of all of our hard work and that makes it all worth it.”