By STEVEN NALLEY
“April is the cruelest month.”
T.S. Eliot’s classic poem, “The Waste Land,” begins with these words, and college students across America believe them. Any pleasure April brings with spring breezes, mild sunshine, blossoming flowers and Easter candy is crushed under the weight of 10-page term papers, group projects and comprehensive final exams.
Mississippi State University’s Campus Activities Board aims to make students’ April a little brighter with Spring Fling, a festival with inflatables, activities, and free food to reduce students’ stress.
Spring Fling will be held April 5, with a rain date of April 12, at 4-6 p.m. at MSU’s former intramural fields. Admission is free, and while the event is aimed at students, it is open to the public.
Jackie Mullen, a student on the CAB, said the event would include inflatable attractions, barbecue from Little Dooey’s, snow cones, a mechanical bull, and removable tattoos provided by one of the event’s co-sponsors, Lakeside Apartments.
“I just like the fact that it’s an opportunity for students to have fun,” Mullen said. “They’re always bombarded with meetings and other responsibilities, but this is a chance for them to get free food and relax.”
Exams at MSU start on April 25, and Mullen said those exams were the primary motivation to put on the event at this time of year.
“It will give students the chance to enjoy the outdoors before exams start,” Mullen said “It’s kind of like a carnival for big kids.”
Mullen said putting on Spring Fling has been a big responsibility for the students on the CAB, but it will all be worthwhile in the end.
“I think any time you put on a big event like this, there’s a lot of logistical things that have to happen.” Mullen said. You have to make sure there’s power outdoors, you have to make food arrangements, make sure it’s not going to rain, everything you could think of. It’s all student-run, and all the ideas and logistics are put on directly by the students.”
Organizing the event as a whole is MSU senior Libby Benson. She said the biggest challenge in putting together Spring Fling is managing the budget.
“Our co-sponsors have been really helpful in this aspect,” Benson said. “We’ve been very careful to plan a really fun event while also being mindful of our spending. The other difficult aspect of Spring Fling is planning around the weather. We’ll make a decision Monday morning whether the event will need to be postponed due to rain.”
Benson said this would be the last CAB event she would oversee before her graduation, and her first time organizing Spring Fling in particular.
“It is definitely bittersweet to be graduating, but I’m ready,” Benson said. “I’ll miss the people here at Mississippi State and all of the fun times I had, but it’s going to feel great to walk across that stage at graduation.”