Winter Warm-Up showcases more than 120 organizations

Winter Warm-Up day brought more than 120 organizations to the Memorial Field House Feb.1and performances by multiple groups including the IUP Drill Team. (Morgan Cunningham/ The Penn)

When IUP Day began in the fall six years ago, representatives from only five organizations attended. But the first Winter Warm-Up, IUP Day’s spring counterpart, brought more than 120 organizations to the Memorial Field House Saturday.

However, this turnout was smaller than IUP Day’s last semester since some sororities held recruitment events Satur­day, according to James Smith (junior, political science), executive director of The Pulse – the organization that ran Winter Warm-Up.

Campus organizations, Greek life and community restaurants set up tables with informational posters, free giveaways, games and food in an effort to advertise, recruit and inform students.

The event also featured performanc­es from the Drill Team, Voices of Joy, IUP Cheerleaders, Damage Dolls, Crimson Twirlers, the Militia and Iota Phi Theta.

“It seems good so everyone can see what they can actually get into,” Lizzy Weinelt (freshman, pre-dental) said at the event.

Taze Ristorante, a Mediterranean restaurant that opened on Philadel­phia Street in mid-August, handed out samples of their steak bites and mush­room appetizer and their cupcakes of the day. They also gave away a $25 gift card.

“It’s a really good way to get the community aware of who we are and get everyone to try our food,” Taze server Caleb Feigles (theater and dance) said.

The organization fair was also helpful for new campus organizations.

The Indiana University of Pennsylvania chapter of Autism Speaks U has been established for only one year, so Winter Warm-Up helped the organization spread awareness.

“We had a lot more interest this time than in the fall,” Kirsten Sawtelle (sophomore, biochemistry), who manned the Autism Speaks U booth, said. “We’ve had quite a few sign ups. And it helps spread awareness for Autism.”

IUP Ambassadors President Tim Lynch (junior, criminology) said that Ambassadors is very interested in re­cruiting underclassmen. But freshmen couldn’t join in the fall after IUP Day because they need to establish their GPA first.

“Students had a chance to see what groups were at IUP Day,” Lynch said. “So, now they know who we are, and they come up to us instead of us coming to them.”