While we always Think Purple, the WIU campus was painted pink last week. That’s because the annual Big Pink Volleyball Tournament started on Monday, Oct. 20th and continued through Oct. 23rd. This fundraising event was sponsored by WIU’s Campus Recreation Center and co-sponsored by Thompson Hall.
There were five brackets for the tournament—independents, Greeks, residence halls, clubs/organizations, and faculty/staff. The tournament used a single elimination rule.
If you’ve never watched (or played) Big Pink Volleyball, it’s definitely a sight to be seen. Surprisingly, it doesn’t require actual volleyball skills to be good at Big Pink Volleyball because the ball is not an actual volleyball; it’s just a giant pink inflatable ball. This year, 171 teams participated in the tournament. A team from the faculty and staff bracket won the overall tournament this year; this team was called “Becky’s Brigade”.
Half of the proceeds generated from this event go to the McDonough District Hospital Mammogram Assistance Program. The other half of the money goes to the Susan G. Komen for the Cure organization in Peoria, Illinois. This year, more than $6000 was raised and money is still rolling in thanks to t-shirt sales. Every year, there is a new t-shirt design. You can check out each year’s design on display at the Recreation Center.
Campus Recreation Graduate Assistant Sarah Frederick explained why this philanthropic event is such a big hit on campus. “So many people are affected by someone who has cancer whether it be a survivor or someone who has passed. They know by doing this, they raise more awareness for this horrible disease,” Frederick said.
My sorority participated in Big Pink Volleyball this year with two teams; we had a team for our active members and one for our new members. The active members lost our first game, but the new members were victorious at first and made it to the second night of games. I didn’t get to participate this year because I had to work on the first night of the tournament but I had a blast playing in the Big Pink Volleyball Tournament last year; my arms were super sore the next day!
As for her favorite part of the tournament, Frederick explained “My favorite part is the first two nights because the games go from 4 p.m. until 10 p.m. and all the students are in the Rec playing this game. It’s really fun to watch them,” she said.
Like the WIU Campus Recreation Center on Facebook and check out the many photos taken throughout last weeks’ event at https://www.facebook.com/WIUCAMPUSREC.