Registration for the third annual Washburn’s Big Event: Bods into the Streets is underway until Sunday. The Big Event occurs Saturday, April 26.
Until Sunday, students, faculty, staff and community members are encouraged to register for the service opportunity of their choice. After April 20, the only opportunity to register will be on the big day. But volunteers who register on April 26 will not be able to choose their worksite.
On April 26, participants will serve more than 30 Topeka agencies by picking up litter, landscaping, painting and caring for animals, among other activities.
As of Tuesday, April 15 there were 291 registrants for The Big Event, according to records. This year’s goal is 400 participants.
That’s a tremendous growth in three years. Prior to 2012, the Learning in the Community Bonner Leaders operated Bods Into the Streets for several years. It had as many as 60 registrants. In 2012, the LinC effort and the Washburn Student Government Association joined forces.
This is the first year that faculty, staff and community members have been invited to participate in addition to Washburn students.
“We made that decision because we felt that if students saw the community involved they would be more likely to also be involved,” said Damian Barron, community liaison for WSGA, who has helped organize the event.
Barron, from Dodge City, Kan., has been involved with The Big Event for each of his years at Washburn, working on the logistics side and as a volunteer on the big day.
“I’ve fallen in love with the event and everything it stands for,” he said. “I was glad I was able to volunteer because it reminded me … the impact of the event itself is invaluable to the community. Being part of this is personally important to me because I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for the generosity of people who have helped along the way. I think it’s important to give back, whether it be by donation or community service.”
Co-organizer Angelique Flinn, from Topeka, said the event is a great way for students to come together and give of their time for one day. But the goal is much bigger.
“This is a good way for students to get involved and get to a point they want to do service throughout the year,” Flynn said.
All registrants will meet at Yager Stadium at Moore Bowl at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, April 26. A pep rally and snacks will get the group started off and lunch will be provided at the various work sites.