By Shira Kipnees ’15, Staff Writer
F&M students looking for additional, late-night weekend activities now have another choice thanks to a new organization on campus, F&M Options: The Other Night Life. The goal of the club is to offer a variety of weekend events for F&M students as part of a fun, safe, and diverse environment.
“Since college is supposed to be a time for building lasting relationships and networking for the future, F&M Options hopes to provide events in a social environment that will bring students together from all areas on campus,” said Layla Thomas ’17, the club’s founder and president. “We hope to work with existing clubs, Houses, and organizations to get them involved through encouraging clubs to advertise, fundraise, host, and, in some cases, perform at Options events or an event that fulfills the requirements of being an Options event.”
Thomas elaborated on some of the group’s functions; the primary focus is to create a forum where students can learn about all events taking place on campus during a given weekend, but will also plan events of their own when programming on campus is light. Currently, 37 students are on the group’s mailing list, and the club continues to grow.
The idea for creating F&M Options came after Thomas realized that some of the late-night activities on weekends seemed a bit repetitive and hoped for more optins to choose from. After some work, planning, and coordination with Suzanne Richter, dean of New College House, F&M Options was able to host its first interest meeting in October; Thomas said she was happy with the turnout at the meeting, and took it as a sign that F&M Options is a club that the campus needs.
“To go out means attending the same sort of parties weekend after weekend, which, while fun, can nevertheless get repetitious [and] to stay in means spend a weekend doing homework, which no one wants to do, watching a movie, and you can only watch so many movies, or just relaxing with friends,” Thomas said. “To me, these few choices you have just don’t seem like enough for over 2,000 college students. F&M Options wants to fill that space in between ‘going out’ and ‘staying in’ by one, informing students about what options are available to them to do, and two, developing events when the options are lacking.”
Students’ reception of F&M Options has been mixed, according to Thomas, but students have been supportive. “To me, this is because F&M Options isn’t a replacement,” she said. “It isn’t ‘anti’ this or that — it’s just, as the name suggests, another option. Take it or leave it, it’s just more choices to pick from and, I believe, that’s what makes F&M Options accepted by students in all divisions of campus.”
In keeping with their focus, F&M Options is trying to advertise events happening on campus on weekends and coordinating with existing clubs and organizations to host events. Thomas said that F&M Options has already planned their first event of the year with the Rumspringas and is trying to coordinate with a capella groups, like the Kite and Keys, and eventually, campus bands.
F&M Options’ first event will be on Saturday, Nov. 16, called “Back to the 90s,” with trivia, prizes, and an improvisational comedy performance from the Rumspringas, and will be held at Ben’s Underground. Another event is in the works for Saturday, Nov. 23, where s’mores will be served; the event is being called the “S’moregasbord.”
While the organization is not yet an official club on campus, it hopes to be recognized in the near future. Students interested in getting involved with F&M Options — either in attending or performing at events — should email the club at TheOtherNightLife@gmail.com.
Junior Shira Kipnees is a staff writer. Her email is firstname.lastname@example.org.