BY ELLIE DETWEILER
Drake University is well-known for its Painted Street, but what does it take for the people behind the scenes to pull off one of the extravagant highlights of the school?
The Student Activities Board (SAB) co-chairs for the Drake Relays are Karoline Sandusky and Meghan Mulligan. Sandusky, a junior public relations major with a Spanish minor, and Mulligan, a junior studying accounting with a marketing minor, joined SAB their first year. Sandusky was the co-chair of Blitz Day her sophomore year. Blitz Day is the annual event where the theme, band and Painted Street applications are released.
The process of picking which organization’s squares will be included is not a first-come, first-served basis or a rotation system as most students may guess.
“We choose who gets a square on Painted Street based solely upon creativeness and incorporation of the 2018 Relays theme that is announced at Blitz Day,” said Sandusky. “Everyone has a fair chance of obtaining a square based on their artistic abilities.”
Last year’s theme was “Like Never Before,” and designs are chosen by SAB based on the design’s relation to the theme and its creativity. After the theme was announced at Blitz Day on April 11, organizations had until Monday, April 16 at 5 p.m. to create and submit their design to SAB. Their design may or may not have been picked to be included in the 54-square display.
“It’s interesting in a way because you watch the tradition from last year be painted over and the year end,” Sandusky said. “Then, it’s painted these brand new, bright colors and Meghan and I get to see the new theme come to life as different groups interpret it.”
For small organizations, like Drake’s Disability Action and Awareness Committee (DAAC), money used to obtain paint comes from the president and vice president’s pockets.
“It is all a fun process, but very expensive for a small organization like us,” Nelson said.
DAAC created its first Painted Street square last year, designed by graphic design major Morgan Stuedemann, DAAC’s vice president. While the University provides the cans of paint for the paint fight, organizations must buy their own cans and paint equipment for painting their squares.
“It is really awesome to create something that people see all year,” Nelson said. “I loved every freezing wet and colorful moment of it and cannot wait to do it all again.”
Anna Jensen, a junior studying news and public relations, sits on the executive board of Student Senate as vice president of student activities and is also the president of SAB. Jensen, involved in SAB since her first year at Drake, finds the process of painting over old squares more emotional, as her position of Relays co-chair as a sophomore allowed her to pick the squares previously on the street.
“We laid out the street and it’s been really cool to know that I was a huge part of this year’s street that everyone cherishes,” Jensen said. “It has been there for a year. It’s had its time, but it’ll be emotional knowing it’s a new year.”