Tropical Celebration 2019

LEZIGA BARIKOR, Staff Writer

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Tropical wear and sandals were required for this year’s Tropical Celebration Day (TC Day) on campus.

UNI President Mark Nook issued a Presidential Proclamation on April 18, setting Monday, April 22 to be TC Day.

“I love dressing up, and I have far too many tropical t-shirts in my closet, so this is one of the only opportunities I get to actually wear these things,” said Roman Galles, a fourth-year biology major.

Students, faculty and staff were able to visit the President’s Office in Seerley to receive free ice cream and Italian Ice and pose in a photo booth.

The event was planned out by Nook’s office, and the treats were coordinated through UNI Dining Services. Flavors ranged from sweet cream, peanut butter, cookie dough and strawberry.

Galles and his friends, from the fraternity Pi Kappa Alpha, were very in tune with the spirit of TC Day. Working together, they inflated a large blow-up yellow duck and brought it to Nook’s office for a photo opportunity. Nook appeared delighted to help the students and posed for several photos with the duck, even taking a seat on it himself.

The owner of the large blow-up duck had been waiting for an opportunity like this for some time.

“I honestly just wanted to get a picture of Mark Nook and my blow-up duck because I’ve had this for two years after winning it in a hall raffle and I’ve not gotten to use it yet,” said Josh Larson, a senior majoring in secondary mathematics education. “So, I thought that this would be the perfect opportunity.”

“My friend Josh here has dedicated the next couple hours to sitting in the fountain of Maucker Union with the duck! He’s hanging out with the duck in the fountain,” Galles said.

“You gotta celebrate the holidays,” Larson said.

It was still a bright and warm 70 degrees outside when Larson was lounging in the Maucker Union fountain on his duck, ice cream in hand. There was no actual water in the fountain, but Larson didn’t mind.

“I wanted to float because it is the only body of water, but now there’s no water, but I’m still going to float somewhere,” Larson said.

Students and faculty all over campus wore tropical shirts. Free leis were available for pick-up in Rod Library.

Larson was not the only student enthusiastic about TC Day.

“I literally door-busted the place last year, but I had class this time. But I literally love it,” said senior Spanish education major Olinca Padierna. “I think it’s such a fun way to get everyone excited for the end of the year and it’s like that last push, just motivation for all of us to get through finals and stuff like that. It’s fun. And it’s always fun on campus when we all get sweet little treats just randomly.”

Transfer student Logan Sisk, a junior movement and exercise science major, said he’d never seen anything like this.

“This is a cool way to get people involved with Mark Nook,” Sisk said.

According to Nook, this event was repeated because of the requests of students and faculty after last year.

“A year ago was the first time we did it,” Nook said. “I was sitting in my office on April 18th, and it was snowing and we had cancelled classes on the 18th of April because of snow. And everyone was pretty tired of snow. I was pretty tired of snow, so I just decided we’d declare a day to kind of relax and get over winter.”

Nook said the event was a fun way to relax and get to know students at a different level.

“I love it. I think it’s a really good idea. I hope they keep doing it,” Padierna said.

Although there are currently no plans in place for TC Day next year, Nook said that several students and employees have requested that it be instituted as an annual event.

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