It was an atypical 45-degree February evening when an impromptu dance party took over a portion of Herak Lawn on Friday night.
For once, students occupying the 120 tents of Gonzaga’s third Tent City event of the season didn’t need to move to the sounds of Fergie’s “Fergalicous,” blaring from a set of nearby speakers, to stay warm.
On the eve of the 14th-ranked Gonzaga men’s basketball team’s rivalry game with BYU at the McCarthey Athletic Center, many students wore hooded sweatshirts in lieu of coats.
Gonzaga senior Julia Donovan, a Tent City regular since her freshman year, said she didn’t miss the frigid temperatures.
“This is the warmest Tent City I have attended,” said Donovan, an Oakland, California, native. “The air is great right now. I am not even wearing gloves like normal. It’s usually a sacrifice of your comfort.”
Since 2006, students have braved inclement weather, but the 2017-18 season has seen modest conditions.
Campers were hit by rain on Jan. 17 before the Bulldogs locked up with Saint Mary’s. It was “chilly” the night before Creighton visited Dec. 1.
If temperatures fall below 22 degrees, students are required to sleep indoors, according to Tent City coordinator Will Foley.
Tents were set up around 2:30 p.m. Friday, and each Gonzaga student camper was fed a complimentary meal from the Spaghetti Factory. About 145 trays of food were dropped off to the city of tents, Foley said, along with free T-shirts.
Spots in Tent City are a coveted commodity.
On the Wednesday before slated Tent City events, members of the Kennel Club Board tweet a location on campus for students to receive a tent number.
The spot also ensures a student ticket to the game, leading to a frenzied rush at the tweeted location, according to board member Ann Monroe.
“The energy here is so much fun,” Donovan said of Tent City “I chose this school because of the school spirit and how much of the community feeling here. You just can’t get this anywhere else.”
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