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Students roll the dice at Sigma Kappa casino night event

Card dealer Jim Marshall clears the table as Natalie Jahnke prepares her raffle tickets for the prize drawings at Sigma Kappa’s casino night last Friday. The prizes included hair cuts, shampoos, comedy club tickets and a trip to Las Vegas. The event raised money for Sigma Kappa’s Ultra Violet campaign, which supports a variety of charities. / photo by Warren Bessant

Christina Collins-Burton
Staff Writer

With a two night stay at the Aria and two tickets to any show at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on the line, guests of the sisters of Sigma Kappa gambled for a chance to win the grand prize.

The women of Sigma Kappa transformed the ballrooms of the Campus Center into the University of La Verne’s very own casino floor on Nov 12.

“I wanted to create a fun environment, I know everyone just finished with midterms,” Diane Castruita, a senior business major and organizer of the event, said.

Castruita was able to get the grand prize of the evening donated to the Sigma Kappa organization.

As guests arrived for an evening of gambling and fun, the women greeted each of them at the door. Invited guests were checked off of a guest list as they paid a $15 cover charge.

After paying, guests were given $100 worth of “funny money” that could be traded in for chips and a raffle ticket.

In order to be entered into the prize drawing to win the Vegas trip, guests put their names on the back of their raffle tickets and placed them in a basket.

Besides the Vegas trip, guests were also entered in a chance to win various salon gift certificates, restaurant gift certificates and a round of golf for four people.

“We are going to start from the minimum prize and work our way up to the grand prize at the end of the night,” Andrea Swann, a senior criminology major and member of Sigma Kappa, said.

Swann collected raffle tickets and monitored a silent auction for guests to bid on.

Baskets were built by the sisters of Sigma Kappa and donated by their families.

Guests could put bids down on baskets that displayed ULV spirit, to baskets that featured a mixture of Christmas decorations.

At the end of the evening, the highest bidders of the silent auction collected their gift baskets from the entry table.

In order to get more raffle tickets, guests could buy 10 tickets for $5 or 20 tickets for $10. The event offered another way for those attending to earn tickets without spending a dime.

Two blackjack tables, a craps table and a roulette table offered guests a chance to cash in their funny money for chips to gamble and earn credit towards raffle tickets. For every $1,000 they won, they were given 10 tickets.

“The atmosphere is nice, it’s an escape from school,” Oscar Bauman, sophomore political science major, said. “It has been a very pleasurable evening.”

Bauman won $6,000 gambling and walked away with 60 raffle tickets to enter into the drawing.

Bauman earned most of his winnings playing roulette.

Guests crowded around every table, waiting for their turn as they cheered on those who were still actively placing their bets.

“The gambling was almost like the real thing,” Glendora resident Lucas Wilder said. “It’s an interesting concept and it was fun.”

As the tables closed and the final chips were cashed in for raffle tickets, attendees waited in suspense for their name to be called. The grand prize was given to Covina resident Steven Rubio who attended the Sigma Kappa event with friends from the University.

Christina Collins Burton can be reached at

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