Carleton held its annual MidWinter Ball on Saturday, Feb. 2. Sayles-Hill, the Great Hall, and the Sevy Tea Room were all filled with the whirling, dancing bodies of students and faculty.
The festivities commenced at 9:30pm in each of the rooms, at which time Carls slowly began trickling into the dancing spaces. By ten o’clock, streams of students and faculty were moving in thick streams through the hallways of the Complex, all of which had become densely filled.
In the Great Hall, the Roseville Big Band played jazz and swing standards, including “Sing, Sing, Sing,” and Count Basie’s “One O’clock Jump.”
Alex Long ‘13, a senior Biology major, said that she enjoyed hearing music she could swing dance to. “They played an awful amount of foxtrot in previous years,” she said, “But this year I was glad that the band played more swing music.”
Alex Trautman ‘15 seconded Long’s endorsement. “I loved the whole [Ball], though my favorite was the Big Band. I can’t say that I know how to waltz or foxtrot but it was great music to have a fun time to.”
In the Sevy Tea room Carls twisted to the zesty beats of salsa, flamenco, and cha-cha-chá songs played by Salsa Del Soul, a Minneapolis-based band specializing in Latin-style dance music.
Sam Braslow ‘15, a sophomore English major, said he made a particular point of going to the Sevy Tea room.
“I always have a phenomenal time in the Sevy Tea Room,” said Braslow. “The Ball was one of the more gratifying dancing experiences I’ve had.”
In Sayles-Hill’s great space student Disc Jockeys played pop and electronic dance music, including Madonna’s “Like A Prayer” at midnight as per the Carleton tradition. As in past years, the College required students to wear silver wristbands to attend the Ball.
Carleton Security personnel were primarily posted outside the entrance to Sayles in an effort to bar entrance for non-registered guests. Curbing incidents of misconduct at school dances, particularly when held in Sayles-Hill, has been a major concern of the Student Activities and Deans’ offices in recent years.
Nimita Iyer ‘15 said that she agreed with the College’s decision last year to move dances formerly held in Sayles-Hill to Cowling gymnasium. “It’s probably a good thing that [Sayles dances] aren’t allowed except for at the Ball,” she said.
Casey Goodge ‘14, a Computer Science major, said that he thought Carls were pleased with the Ball. “The general student body appreciates it,” Goodge said. “I think people really enjoy it for the opportunity to have a different kind of dancing experience [than at the Cave or Cowling].”
“And the food,” he continued, referring to the catering provided by Bon Appétit for the event, “The food is popular. I hit the [hors d’oeuvres] tables, too. Pizza, pizza, pizza.”
Jasmine Zahid ‘14, a philosophy major, speculated on another appealing aspect of the Ball. “I’m pretty sure if you took a poll of the females at school, almost 90% of girls would say that it’s a good chance to dress up,” Zahid said, adding, “I had no trouble reaching my mailbox because I had heels on. It was nice.”