Hundreds of students trekked to the Mount Vernon Campus Saturday afternoon for its annual Fountain Day event where they enjoyed a performance by headliner Ben Kweller and took part in activities with a “Turning on Awareness” theme.
The concert featured sets by Derek James and GW band Jukebox the Ghost, in addition to Kweller. Aside from the musical acts, Fountain Day featured tie-dyeing, spin art and a henna tattoo artist.
Kweller played several songs on both the guitar and piano, including “Penny on the Train Track” and an encore of “Wasted and Ready,” at the urging of the audience.
Throughout his set, Kweller entertained the crowd by talking about his experiences in songwriting, telling stories about visiting his grandparents in Bethesda, Md., jokingly denouncing Georgetown University and urging everyone to vote for his video on Total Request Live, an MTV music video program.
Melanie Samper, the co-chair for Mount Vernon Programming Council Traditional Events, said it was hard to estimate the total turnout because students were coming and going throughout the day, but she said MVPC ran out of the 1,500 T-shirts they had on hand to distribute to students. To handle the above-average influx to Mount Vernon Campus, extra shuttles were provided to transport students throughout the afternoon.
Samper said the theme “Turning on Awareness” was chosen because various student organizations – all with goals relating to raising awareness about environmental and political issues – approached her about helping with Fountain Day. Activities included a tree planting sponsored by Green GW, voter registration sponsored by GW Democrats and a mock refugee camp sponsored by GW STAND.
Simone Smith, a freshman who lives on the Mount Vernon Campus, said she thinks Mount Vernon Campus Life is doing a great job of getting all students to appreciate the smaller campus, especially since events at Mount Vernon Campus usually have a smaller turnout than those held in Foggy Bottom.
“I think people don’t always have the time or make the effort to come to events on the Vern, but for the people that do show up they have an amazing time,” Smith said.
Mount Vernon Programming Council, along with Program Board and Class Council, organized the event.
Ashley Carter, a freshman who lives at the Mount Vernon Campus, said, “It’s been a stressful week, and it’s good to come chill out.”
Lauren Winsten, a sophomore who lives in Foggy Bottom, said she came mostly to hear Ben Kweller but enjoyed all of the activities offered.
“Honestly though, I don’t think I would come to the Vern unless it’s for a free concert or another big event,” Winsten said.