Hundreds of students flocked to Sneaky Park on Valentine’s Day for CAB’s big “1 Billion Hearts” event.
The event was a collaboration by CAB, Sigma Alpha Epsilon and the Office of Multicultural Services in order to make a fun way to celebrate Valentine’s Day for the students, but also raise awareness of violence against women.
The event coincided with the international “One Billion Rising” marking the 15th anniversary of V-Day for which “women and those who love them were urged to walk out, dance rise up and demand an end” to violence against women, according to the V-Day website.
The on-campus event “started out as just a fun idea, but then other groups wanted to get in on it so it became this big thing,” said senior criminology major and CAB member Carina Gonzalez.
Originally a Valentine’s Day event, CAB then decided to get involved with the global movement.
V-Day stems from the play “The Vagina Monologues,” written in 1994 by activist Eve Ensler.
Based on dozens of interviews Ensler collected, the play focused on women’s sexuality and the social aspect of rape and abuse.
On Valentine’s Day 1998, Ensler and a group of women from New York established V-Day.
They raised more than $250,000 in a single evening through a celebrity benefit performance at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York in order to end violence against women.
Since then, there have been over 5,800 V-Day events that occur annually.
CAB made sure there were plenty of things to do to keep students occupied during this special day.
There was a graffiti wall, a balloon artist, caricature stand, make-your-own Valentine’s Day cards, raffles, giveaways and more.
SAE members dressed up as cupids and allowed students to take pictures with them and make cards for sick children in hospitals.
“The reason we put on that event is spread the awareness of our national philanthropy, the Children’s Miracle Network,” sophomore psychology major and SAE member Steven Castellanos said.
“Students were encouraged to write letters to the patients, and we had the cupids there to join the theme of Valentine’s Day,” he said.
ASULV also had a booth where students could vote for this year’s performer at La Verne’s annual music event, Lavernapalooza.
Live music provided by the music fraternity Mu Phi Epsilon, as well as a solo performance by junior liberal studies major Mason Sustayta and the Leo Singing Dudes, added to the lively atmosphere.
There was a free outdoor lunch provided for all students on top of all the Valentine’s Day fun.
“I really enjoyed the live music and the turnout- everyone’s here,” freshman biology major Madison Simons said.
“It seems lively, relatively good turnout of people, and the decorations and music embody the mood well,” freshman political science major Barron Omega said.
“It was a fun event. Good vibes, good food. The music was awesome; the performers did a really good job; All in all it was a successful event,” freshman e-commerce and speech major Hala Fattal said.
Alison Rodriguez can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.