Written by: Samantha Cardenas, Sonoma State Star Staff Writer
There’s nothing that attracts struggling college students more than the word “free.” That appeared as the biggest appeal of the “Skate with a Date” event put on by Sonoma State University Associated Students Productions at Cal Skate in Rohnert Park, where some people fell in love, while others just fell on their behinds.
By students showing their Seawolf IDs at the door, they received free entry to the event, as well as free skate rentals. Students with dates, as well as students who were looking to have a fun night out with a group of friends, were encouraged to dress up in matching costumes. Attendees were able to enjoy skating around the rink, taking silly photos with Valentine’s Day-themed props, as well as playing arcade games.
“[The event] “sparked from the idea of building relationships with those in the Rohnert Park community,” said Campus Connections Director Ciera Leidheisl. “We already do monthly free bowling nights at Double Decker Lanes, so I figured, why not try to get to the same level with Cal Skate?”
By having this event, it gave students, who might be new to Sonoma State, the opportunity to get out and do something fun and also the chance to meet their fellow students.
Upon arriving to the event, music was heard blaring through the open doors, and the line to get in was a steady three people out the door. While standing in line, chatter of who was going to be there, what music people were hoping to hear and how many times people were going to fall was being discussed.
“I’m really hoping the music is good,” said sophomore Taylor Jennings. “I feel like music is a big factor in making or breaking a good time, so fingers crossed it’s decent.”
Entering the venue, students were zooming by on their skates and heading to the rink to show off their moves. Couples were identified by their matching outfits and friends were interlocking arms to keep each other from falling. The smell of nachos and hotdogs filled the air and the place looked like a scene out of the movie “Roll Bounce.” Skating around the rink, a variety of people and levels of skaters were seen. From experts racing around and doing spins and tricks, to the hopeful beginners clinging onto the walls.
“My friends wanted me to come, so I decided that I would even though I suck at roller skating,” said freshman Kaitlyn Rose. “But I thought it would be a lot of fun to do with my fellow students, so I’m glad I came.”
By around 11:45 p.m. when the event was coming to a close, it didn’t look as if people were planning on leaving. The sounds the DJ was putting out kept people moving and it looked as if the party wouldn’t stop until the sun came up. From the turnout of the event, round two for next year is looking hopeful.
“I would absolutely love to bring back this event,” said Ciera. “I plan on building a steady connection with Cal Skate in the future. With almost 300 students in attendance, it was apparent that many people had a great time and this event is worth counting.”