One of many Joy-FUL events Tiger Den Eatery held this month for students was Festi-FUL on Sept. 24 in the Tiger Den.
COVID-19 has taken a toll for in-person events on campus, so many students welcomed the festival, which consisted of activities, food and dancing with Pouncer.
“This is an opportunity for UofM Dining to show our appreciation to the University and the students for dining with us,” said Helene Champ, marketing director at the University of Memphis. “It’s also in hope that somehow that this event will make us feel more connected because we haven’t been connected enough.”
To celebrate coming back together on campus during the pandemic, Chartwells, which has a dining contract with UofM, launched the Joy-Ful Campaign to welcome new and returning students on campus.
The theme of Festi-Ful aimed for a street food festival vibe. There was live music, T-shirt giveaways and games like jenga, corn toss. Students were able to sing to display their artistic talent. Street food specials included nachos, fish n chips, chicken BBQ quesadillas, chili lime chicken tacos, and a cotton candy machine.
John Eshun, senior at the University of Memphis, said his favorite part was “being able to participate, dance, engage with Pouncer and being outside vibing to the music.”
“My favorite performance was Jarmari,” said Eshun. “It was cool seeing someone play modern songs on the saxophone such as Hotline Bling by Drake.”
Parent and Family Weekend coincided with the festival. Parents of the students attended this event to fellowship with their children and other families. People walked around Tiger Den and took pictures with Pouncer to create new memories.
“Festi-FUL was a creative and fun way to bring students back to campus,” said Morgan Springer, U of M Dining Marketing Coordinator. “Food is connecting students to regular campus life since we’ve been through a non-traditional year.”