Free food, live music and outdoor activities lured a large crowd of APU students on Friday to the Dillon Recreation Center. 

Hosted by the new Office of Campus Life, Fall Fest successfully brought the student community together to celebrate the beginning of the fall semester and the end of the first week of classes.

This was the first Fall Fest to be hosted by the office. The event was previously organized by the Office of Communiversity, which is no longer in function. 

“Take what was Communiversity, and take what was the Orientation and Transitions Office, combine them together and that is the Office of Campus Life,” said Kayleigh McNaughton, the campus activities coordinator. “We are really excited about this new collaboration.”

Campus Life will maintain the functions that were previously housed within the other offices, including Outdoor Adventures, Intramurals, Clubs and Organizations, Performing Arts and Special Events. They will also add Alpha Leaders, AC groups and the APU TWO program to the list of events and programs that they oversee. 

With the merge, McNaughton said the office can now reach more students. 

“Beforehand, we were reaching out to people who were interested in intramurals or students in Performing Arts events or people who were interested in climbing trips,” McNaughton said. “With the merge, the office can now reach all the deep pockets of APU’s student community which they previously did not interact with.”

Nicholas Fernandez, a sophomore Christian ministries major and special events intern for Campus Life, said each office can now feed off of each other and create events with one another. 

Friday marked the beginning of this transition, where students were treated to free ice-cream, live music, a variety show, trivia, a rock climbing wall and a free trail mix bar. The highlight of the event was a dance-off between Freddy Cougar, APU’s mascot, and the Chick-fil-A cow. 

The dance-off consisted of two rounds. The Chick-fil-A cow won over the crowd with a routine to Migos’ “Stir Fry” in the first round, but Freddy Cougar took back the initiative in the second with a solid performance to Future’s “Mask Off.”

Despite the Chick-fil-A cow being the crowd favourite, Fernandez crowned Freddy Cougar as the winner of the dance-off. 

McNaughton said the event was an exciting start to the semester, and the office is looking forward to seeing what they can accomplish with having more people in the same space.