Payton Clark, Assistant News Editor
Dancing in lines, Sigma Phi’s and good times.
Last Saturday social club Pi Sigma Phi led their annual Barn Dance at the Shawnee Feed Pavilion. From 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., students enjoyed dancing, photo booths and snacks, and all of the proceeds benefited the therapeutic riding center, C-Bar Horsemanship.
“100 percent of the money we make on tickets will go to C-Bar and their programs,” sophomore nursing major and social chair for Pi Sigma Phi Jillian Smith said. “I also think that [the Barn Dance] is a great way to get to know people who may have never met before, especially if you are interested in getting involved in Greek life in the spring.”
The first Barn Dance was hosted the same year that Pi Sigma Phi was founded, in 2012.
“It got started as a fundraiser event for our philanthropy, C-Bar Horsemanship, which holds programs for kids with special needs to be able to learn about and ride horses,” Jillian said. “It has become a campus wide event that people really seem to enjoy and that we are able to serve C-Bar with.”
According to Pi Sigma Phi president Casey Smith, the Barn Dance is the club’s biggest event of the year, and the biggest chance they have to raise money for C-Bar.
“When we raise money for C-Bar they are able to provide classes for children or adults fully funded so that they are able to have therapy,” Casey said. “The money also goes to necessities like saddles, grooming tools and food. C-Bar does so much for the Shawnee community and Barn Dance is a chance for the community to give back to the great people of C-Bar.”
According to co-social chair and sophomore children’s ministry major Madison Crawford, Barn Dance was previously held at C-Bar Ranch, and has become Sigma Phi’s biggest event since its start.
“The dance started pretty small, just as a way for Pi Sigma Phi to raise money for C-Bar, but it has certainly grown in popularity since then,” Crawford said. “Since 2012, C-Bar has built a barn and the Barn Dance has been held there several times, but this year it is being held at the Shawnee Feed Center Pavilion. Barn Dance is typically held in the fall but sometimes also the spring.”
This year, attendees had the chance to play games, take lots of pictures and of course, dance the night away.
“People get out on the dance floor and show off their great, or sometimes not so great, abilities at two stepping and country line dancing,” Casey said. “There are normally non- country music there to draw in the not so country people. We also have games like corn hole toss and we have snacks to entertain the folks who are allergic to dancing”
The support received from students that attend is one of Casey’s favorite parts of the Barn Dance.
“Being that I am able to see the behind the scenes of Barn Dance, I love to see how much work and team effort comes from the Sigma Phi’s to put on this event for the Bison community, Casey said. “We put a lot of work and time into this event, so when the day of the dance comes it is very rewarding to see everyone show up in support of the event. It’s a big accomplishment to us when people have a great time.”
Crawford said she hopes that people enjoy the experience of Barn Dance as much as she did her first year at OBU.
“We spent many hours planning the music and the decorations, and I am excited for people to just experience the overall atmosphere of this event,” Crawford said. “Barn Dance was something that really drew me toward Pi Sigma Phi my freshman year before I joined a social club. It is so much fun, and I am excited for people to come and enjoy it like I do.”
Crawford said she believes that events like the Barn Dance are important in supporting both the Shawnee and OBU communities.
“I think people should attend Barn Dance, not only because it is for charity, but also because it is a great way for the community of OBU to come together and just put aside the stress of school and work and enjoy a few hours together to have fun, relax, and make some great memories,” Crawford said.
Jillian said she is eager for students to come and enjoy the event.
“Madison Crawford and I, along with lots of help from other girls in our club, have spent a lot of time working on decorations, playlists, and advertising, so we are excited what people will think of the decorations and the event overall,” Jillian said. “Barn Dance is our biggest event, so we are both very excited to see what the outcome will be.”
The Barn Dance is not only a chance to have fun, but to avoid responsibilities at least for a while, according to Casey.
“It’s for a good cause and it’s a night of fun, plus it’s an excuse not to do homework. What more could you ask for?” Casey said.