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Meet Me At The Rec expands, introduces new Cherry Avenue Field to UA students

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Brian Valencia | Arizona Daily Wildcat

Brian Valencia// The Daily Wildcat

Melissa Vito (left), vice president of student affairs, and Frank Farias (right), associate vice president of student affairs, prepare to cut the ribbon at the opening of the Cherry Street field on Monday, Aug. 26, 2013.

A ribbon cutting ceremony for a new field was held at the Student Recreation Center on Monday and was followed by an event focused on getting students involved both on and off campus.

Meet Me At the Rec is an event held annually by the Rec Center, but this year the event was held on the brand new, $3.5 million Cherry Avenue field. The field, located on Sixth Street, will be used for intramural sports, clubs, fitness classes and active students in general.

Melissa Vito, vice president for Student Affairs, thanked everyone who helped make the dream of the new field a reality at the ribbon cutting ceremony.

“There has not been enough green space on campus for students and we are delighted to have this space available,” Vito said. “We have been planning this field for 10 years and it is incredible that it’s finally finished.”

The field was funded by both Campus Recreation and the Athletic Department.

“It’s an awesome field,” said Colby Keicher, a general studies senior and Rec Center employee. “When people drive by now they aren’t looking at construction, they are looking at a green field.”

Despite the less-than-perfect weather, the event had a sizable turnout. Once the ribbon was cut, the festivities began with food, options for club signups and giveaways. Student fees and a wide variety of organizations helped fund the large-scale event. Many of the sponsors had booths around the field promoting their
businesses.

“This event really helps spread awareness about the Rec [Center] and sports,” Keicher said. “Being able to hold it outside was awesome as well.”

Style 7 Salon was one local business that participated in the event. Students could play corn hole at the salon’s booth for the chance to win free treatments, and anyone who stopped by the booth received free samples.

The goal of the event was to introduce students to new things on campus, said Michele Schwitzky, senior assistant director of outreach for Campus Recreation and the coordinator for the event.

“We have really expanded this year,” Schwitzky said. “This is the third year, but the first time it has been outside. We included local businesses and campus partners.”

College Town Tucson had a raffle to win free parking for an entire academic year. Anthony Vizzerra, coordinator for College Town and a senior studying marketing, psychology and chemistry, said he was happy to help out with the event and thought it was very beneficial for incoming freshman.

“I think it’s awesome for promoting businesses and sports,” Vizzerra said.

KAMP Radio supplied the music, a giant bouncy house and volunteers to inform students about KAMP.

The Pride Alliance was another organization participating in the event. Katie Kilby, co-director of Pride Alliance, ran the booth for promoting LGBT acceptance on campus.

“I love this event because I get to meet students with all different passions,” Kilby said.

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