New to Mainstreet

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Hula hooping at the American Marketing Association booth during Mainstreet 2012.

Thousands of students strolled crowded sidewalks on the Atwood Center mall during Mainstreet 2012 on Wednesday. The annual event promoted service and social opportunities on- and off-campus, and offered a welcome back to St. Cloud State University students.

The event was staged by the Department of Campus Involvement and included more than 250 booths and at least 20 new organizations. Meghan Dingmann, assistant director for student organizations in the Department of Campus Involvement, said a diverse range of outside partners participated in the outdoor event because the relaxed atmosphere allowed for friendly interactions and good visibility.

This sentiment was echoed by officer Kelly Holden of the St. Cloud Police Department, one of the organizations participating for the first time. Holden was promoting an upcoming series of informational “cop talks” to be held at the University’s residence halls in September. The police department hopes to help avert problems through better communication of community standards. Among Holden’s handouts was a checklist of the City of St. Cloud’s Social Host Ordinance.

Campus organizations and recreational opportunities were also well represented by student workers who offered information and sign-up sheets for upcoming events.

“It’s important for students to find their niche,” said Campus Involvement graduate assistant Jeremy Sippel. “I love seeing how excited students are.”

“Check out Women That Rock,” said Joe Hoffman, promoting the Campus Rec Climbing Wall, free to students. Every other Thursday from 7-9 p.m., the wall is staffed by women and reserved for local women interested in recreational rock climbing.

Non-Traditional Student Association had a sign-up sheet for notices for social gatherings at the Atwood Theater Lounge, every Tuesday.

In addition to campus and community players, the event drew political participants, including candidates running for state and national office and Zach Wahls, a student of the University of Iowa. Wahls is touring Minnesota college campuses as a voice for “Vote No” against a constitutional amendment that would ban same sex couples from marriage. The issue goes before Minnesota voters in November. Wahls became a national spokesperson after a video of his speech during a public forum in the Iowa House of Representatives went viral online.

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