BY ANA VASUDEVAN & KADY HAMMER
Why wait to celebrate tomorrow when we can celebrate today? This year’s Halloween festivities in Bologna kicked off a day early on October 30th. Organized by the SGA, SAIS Europe danced the night away at the exclusive Casalunga Golf Resort located outside of Bologna’s city walls. In a matter of three days, the SGA, along with their planning committee, sold 186 tickets to interested partygoers and even a few faculty members. Students were dressed head to toe in full character and costume, and the dancing continued on late into the night.
Since their election on October 1st, the SGA has worked to prepare for this year’s event. Halloween at SAIS Europe is an annual tradition hosted by the SGA, which up until 2015 has always featured someone American – where Halloween is most-celebrated. But the dearth of American SGA members didn’t hinder the festivities.
In addition to SGA representatives, a Halloween Party organization committee worked to organize the festivities. This planning committee included Fatima Nanavati, Mike Khayan, Alex Nelson, and Kady Hammer. Under the supervision of the event planner and SGA member, Elisa Bettelli, the committee was involved in selecting the venue, creating advertisements, selling tickets, shepherding students to and from the venue and decorating.
Being that the venue was a 20-minute drive outside of the city walls, the SGA arranged for bus rides to and from the location. SGA member Riccardo Alfieri coordinated with a local bus company to rent two buses that would transport all of the students in four trips. This required an immense amount of coordinated on behalf of the SGA and their organization team in staggering departure times and maintaining the proper time schedule.
It’s safe to say this year’s class embraced the Halloween spirit, as each student in attendance was decked out in a costume of some variety. Costumes ranged from animals, comic book characters, Disney characters, the cast of Alice and Wonderland, a horde of lumberjacks, political figures and even a couple of dictators. As to be expected, central to any Halloween party, there was a costume contest. So who stole the show?
In a catwalk/runway-style costume contest, several students strutted through the dance floor showing off their attire. Some of the costumes included cat women, a housemaid, Zoro, and more. The winner of the individual costume contest, Edmund Ruge, dressed as SAIS Professor John Harper. When asked about his inspiration, Ruge said “I’m auditing his class and I was running out of time. I ran out and got a yellow sweater because he tends to wear that with a button down. I found a white wig, even though his hair is more salt and pepper, and just started cutting. I had a mustache too but that fell off so I had my friend draw it on with a sharpie on the bus ride there.” Dressing up as a professor could fare poorly for Ruge but this week will be the test of his luck. “I’m buckling down on the readings this week because I’m pretty sure word is going to get around to him and he might pick on me all class if he wanted to. I’ll make sure to have my notes out and readings covered” said Ruge.
Also a part of the contest was the group costume whereby the most adorable “old” ladies stole the show. Sarah Golden, Becky Chanis and Julia Saenz were dressed as old ladies as they hobbled down the impromptu runway. As the judges concluded by their costume choices, getting old isn’t so bad if you’re winning contests! Culminating the night’s festivities was a surprise flashmob dance of Michael Jackson’s Thriller coordinated by SAIS Bologna’s Dance Club.