Homecoming dance throws back to ’80s

Katrina Moses, Staff Writer

The Smith University Center (UC) was decorated in bright, vibrant colors for a 1980s-themed dance Francis Marion University’s (FMU) Programming Board (UPB) hosted for students Feb. 20 to begin homecoming weekend festivities.

Jasmine Chestnut, sophomore, pre-nursing major, is a member of UPB; she explained the organization’s intent for the party was to “get the student body out to do something fun for homecoming.”

“We always have a homecoming dance, and we wanted the theme to be fun and colorful. Nothing is as fun and colorful as the ‘80s,” Chestnut said.

Phrases from recognizable movies and songs of the decade were posted around the center. For example, “Nobody puts Baby in the corner”, from “Dirty Dancing” and “Cut loose, footloose” from the original “Footloose” film.

The tables resembled the high tables of the diners in ‘80s milkshake shacks and pictures of cassette tapes littered them; sweet candy, like Ring Pops and Fun Dip, also covered the tables.

The young women in attendance styled their hair into side ponytails and big curls; they wore puffy skirts and applied colorful makeup.  The men donned fedoras, tube socks and brightly-colored glasses.

“I think the 1980s was a good theme; it allowed me to bust out my fedora and dance,” Rand Gravely, sophomore, management information systems major, said.

Gravely was not the only student who enjoyed the party’s theme. Brittany Williams, sophomore, biology major, also spoke positively about the ‘80s revisit.

“The 1980s theme was okay,” Williams said.  “Throwbacks are for back in the day. You can dance and have more fun.”

Students were able to have their pictures taken during the evening.  They were allowed to choose accessories to sport in their photographs; said accessories included colorful boas, American flag-designed glasses or fedora hats.

The musical entertainment was provided by DJ Watts, and it had students “grooving” on the floor.

“We had to tell him to play some music from the ‘80s as well as music we listen to now, and we even gave him specific songs to play,” Chestnut said.

Watts played line dance songs, Michael Jackson hits and old school hip hop.

Whenever students got the opportunity, they would begin break-dancing in classic ‘80s fashion, and others would circle around them.  Other dances that swept the floor were “locking” and the “Nay Nay.”

Students came to the party for different reasons.  Shan Thomas, junior, pre-nursing major, said he was in attendance to support the UPB and the university in their homecoming efforts.

“I was really interested in this,” Thomas said.  “It’s homecoming; we need to show patronage to our school.  [There are] not enough people supporting Francis Marion University.  I wanted to show support, get out and have some fun.”