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Greek Life Strolls into Competition

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EWU Greek Life members participate in Mayhem 2017

EWU Greek Life members participate in Mayhem 2017

Whitney Bolar for The Easterner

Whitney Bolar for The Easterner

EWU Greek Life members participate in Mayhem 2017

By Logan Stahl, Staff Reporter

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The third annual MAYhem Step and Stroll event took place last weekend where diversified sororities and fraternities from the Pacific Northwest competed in a dance-oriented competition.

Most of the competitors at the event were from EWU, but students from Washington State University, University of Washington  and the University of Idaho were present.

The event, hosted in the Showalter auditorium by EWU’s Diversified Greek Council, included two types of performances stepping and strolling.

Stepping originated in early 20th century African American history. Often men working on the railroad and men in the military would use stepping to communicate their thoughts, good or bad, but stepping was also used as a morale booster. Stepping involves using one’s entire body to create sound and rhythm, usually by hand clapping, vocal sayings and foot patterns.

However, strolling was started in the early 1900s by Alpha Kappa Alpha, a National Panhellenic Council  organization. Strolling involves in-sync dancing while the performers stay in line throughout changes in dance patterns.

“[It’s like] synchronized line dancing,” said EWU senior Erik Chavez, a Sigma Lambda Beta member. “Mayhem is one of the biggest fundraisers for us.”

Each chapter started the night with a chant, but soon the real competition started.  Each chapter displayed their best step and stroll moves until a victor was crowned.

The crowd was engaged all night as they showed support for their chapter and their fellow greeks.

Two-time defending champion Sigma Lambda Beta controlled the night,  winning $950 for their chapter.    

“The MAYhem event is an intense competition for greeks to come together and support each other and have fun,” EWU junior Ereisa Morales said.

The Mayhem competition has been growing since the first show years ago.

“This is the first year that my chapter has completed in the event,” said Morales. “We have had lots and lots of practice; we woke up early this morning and practiced till two.”    

Many performers were nervous, even after months of preparation for the event.

“I’m excited but also really nervous for [the] show,” EWU senior Eveth Padilla said.

Events like Mayhem and being a part of Greek life has had a positive impact on students like Padilla.

“If I wasn’t a part of a sorority going to college would be really boring,”  said Padilla. “I’ve made so many good friends in school this way.”

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Greek Life Strolls into Competition