Spring Fest kicks off spring with local music, activities

Spring Fest kicks off spring with local music, activities

Madeline Smith, Multimedia Contributor

Oregon State University students celebrated one of the first sunny evenings of the season with Northwest Spring Fest last Friday, April 28. OSU Program Council (OSUPC) and the Student Sustainability Initiative (SSI) put on Spring Fest to finish off Earth Week and feature local musicians.

Philip Harman, Jacob Harvey and Kat Tomsic of OSUPC were the primary coordinators of the event. They described how this event brought the efforts of two student organizations together, replacing the Battle of the Bands held in previous years.

“Instead of a battle between the bands, we tried to make it more of a festival, and then we combined it with the SSI to promote sustainability,” Tomsic said.

OSUPC brought the aspects of public engagement and large-scale projects, while the SSI contributed the crafts and educational aspects to the evening.

Gabe Fleck, a senior studying graphic design and one of the performers, described the audition process for the bands, a departure from the system used for Battle of the Bands in previous years.

“They didn’t hold auditions, they just said ‘Submit your music.’ I jumped on it, sent them music links and links to YouTube,” Fleck said.  “And they got back to me a week later and said that I was in.”

According to Fleck, he was relieved to be selected. By Friday, he and the other performers were itching to take the stage.

Five local bands performed over the course of the five hour event. Kicking off the event was Provoke the Panda. Next, The Shifts put on a high-energy performance. According to Fleck, The Shifts previously won Battle of the Bands in 2014. Run the Risk played an alt-rock set. As the sun began to set, Fleck took the stage with his producer, Zach Leritz, and they were later joined by their bassist, Ryan Zubieta.

Students, as well as community members, enjoyed the range of activities offered, including community-based art projects, yoga, food trucks and a tea tent.