Today is a special day in the Greek community here at Eastern Illinois. February 1 marks the first day that you are allowed to officially begin practices for Greek week. (Some begin early in hopes that they don’t get caught).
Depending on what event you’re apart of, this could be great news or the beginning of hell for you for the next few months.
All throughout campus today there are teams having try outs or practice for Airband, picking themes and songs out for Greek sing and hitting the gym and pulling out the ropes for Tugs.
This years theme for Greek Week is “the greatest week on Earth,” it will be a circus theme and will be March 31- April 9.
Throughout the week there are several different things to participate in. The more your chapter participates and wins in, the more points you get. At the end of the week whoever has the most total points from the fraternity and sorority division are named the overall Greek week champs. That title is enough to celebrate for the next 365 days, and so is winning either Airband, Greek sing, or Tugs. These are the most important events to us because you literally spend every single day practicing until it gets here.
Now to break down the three biggest components of the week.
Airband is for the dancers of the group. It involves each fraternity and sorority on campus picking a theme and songs that they create a dance to, which they perform in Lantz at the beginning of April. The chapters perform in front of all the other chapters, audience and a panel of judges who then rank each performance and give first, second and third place awards to the top three in the sorority and fraternity division.
Greek sing is for those who like to sing, or in most cases are the ones who are are bad and don’t like to sing, but are forced to do it anyways. This event requires more members from your chapter to participate compared to Airband and Tugs which is why they make it a requirement. Many chapters have a rule that only underclassman must participate or exempt you from doing it if you’ve done Airband or Tugs in previous years. So for most, they’ve either put their time in or are counting down the days until its finally over for them.
Like Airband, each chapter picks a theme and songs that correlate with their theme. Practices begin now up until the performance in April. Practices consist of going over the lyrics, notes and putting the parts from the altos and sopranos together.
The chapters perform in front of the other chapters, audience and judges who then determine the top three performances from both the sorority and fraternity divisions.
Saving the best for last is Tugs (I may be a little biased since this is what I’m involved in).
Tugs is for the athletes or once upon a time athletes. Tugs is literally just tug of war, but it’s so much more than that. Each team has 10 members on their rope. The rope is spread across the pond and you have a team on each side.
They blow a horn and you are whipped around to begin tugging your opponent on the rope. It requires endurance and strength. The team that pulls their opponent back far enough to get their first three girls into the cold water advances to the next round later in the week. This continues until the final two teams compete in the championship where they compete for ultimate bragging rights.
More details on these events will come in later blog posts. Until then, Happy Greek Week!