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Mike Posner headlines Hawkapalooza

BY HANNAH KRAMER | SEPTEMBER 01, 2011 7:20 AM

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An afternoon spent playing such games as bag toss and volleyball in Hubbard Park, eating free food from local Iowa City restaurants, seeing a free concert, and walking away with free goodies — sounds like a lucky day for a college student.

And students will find that luck at Hawkapalooza today.

Hawkapalooza is back with added activities in its third year this fall. A new sports fair will kick off the event at noon, with the annual pep rally at 7:30 p.m. and a concert by Mike Posner at 8:30 p.m.

Admission is free.

“[Hawkapalooza] is really to get students into the Hawkeye spirit for fall athletics,” said Hawks Nest President Kevin Velovitch.

The eight-member, student-run Hawks Nest executive board began work on Hawkapalooza in April.

The organization composed a marketing plan and began working to raise funds from other groups, including the Office of the President and the Athletics Department to make the event possible.

“I can’t say enough how hardworking our board is,” Velovitch said. “We’re all from the UI, so we do [Hawkapalooza] for the school and for the love of the Hawks.”

Members of the Hawks Nest depend on their partnership with other student organizations to make the event possible. SCOPE joined the Hawks Nest crew to make Hawkapalooza happen.

Previous headliners Lupe Fiasco and Big Boi give way to this year’s musical performer, Posner, whose electronic-infused hip-hop beats should entertain the student crowd.

“Mike Posner is a top-40 artist, so that’s always pretty cool to have come to our school,” said SCOPE talent buyer Emily Kane. “I think there’s a lot of bustle about it around campus.”

While SCOPE members are enthusiastic, student reaction is mixed about the choice of performer.

“I’m not a huge Mike Posner fan,” said UI junior Connor Pennino. “But a lot of my friends are going, so that’s why I’m going.”

However, at least some new students on campus seem excited about the show.

Velovitch said that when he announced the performer’s name to nearly 5,000 freshmen at Kinnick Stadium during OnIowa last weekend, the crowd erupted in cheers.

No matter the reason students decide to attend Hawkapalooza, the event coordinators said they think it is a great way for the students to come together to celebrate the beginning of a new semester.

“I think people go to Hawkapalooza regardless of the acts,” Kane said. “It’s all about being back at school and getting to hang out with your friends, so I think it should be a good time.”


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