I was bothered by the article about the cancellation of the Freshman Block Party (“Organizers cancel Freshman Block Party,” April 19, p. 2″). I was upset not in the fact that the event was cancelled, but in the fact that the freshman organizers have the audacity to claim that “University administrators – through their oversight and negligence – have forced us to cancel the event.” Oversight and negligence does not fall on the University in this case.
These students obviously have no real experience in planning any events and need to understand that five weeks is nowhere near enough time to plan any event, especially a block party. I planned Fall Fest on the Quad last year and was the first to bring Spring Fling to H Street and Kogan Plaza, and it was no simple feat. It took five months per event, not weeks, and a lot of coordination with the Marvin Center and Lisner Auditorium staff to properly plan those events. The street closing permits, licenses, meetings with the city and other such technicalities take a great amount of time. My committee was also hindered by Lisner’s schedule as well as pending protests at the IMF building, but we gave enough time to plan accordingly and chose the proper date and time to host a successful event.
Lisner Auditorium plans its own schedule and does not have much of a connection with the University when it comes to scheduling. If the organizers knew what they were doing, they would have begun their planning last semester and gone to Lisner to get the go ahead on that end. Marvin Center staff, especially Danielle Lico, are there to help. They work all year to make sure GW events come off without a hitch.
This is an unfortunate incident that could have been corrected by picking up the phone and calling Lisner to check their schedule. This could have been avoided had the organizers given proper lead time. So next time, instead of placing blame on the team that supports you, the event planners should take responsibility and learn from their mistakes.