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The Carletonian

The Carletonian

The Carletonian

Campus awaits response to Cowling Dance

<w, it’s no secret that Sayles Dances are undergoing administrative review.

Reports of hospital transports and Community Concern reports spiking on dance nights, in addition to concerns brought forth by students, have the College calling for safer regulation.

In response, fall term’s post-Ebony Sayles Dance required students to show their OneCard at the door and outside guests to be registered. It was hoped that these procedures would curtail the presence of non-Carleton students who in the past have caused problems with Carleton students and property in Sayles Hill, where dances are traditionally held.

There are three projected dances this term compared to two last term, including one tomorrow in… Cowling?
Joe Baggot, associate dean of students and one of the administrators behind the review of Sayles Dances, gave three reasons for the switch.  In Cowling, “there’s more space for folks to dance, less disruption to other nearby operations like the bookstore and Sayles Café and a more secure facility for Carleton students and their invited guests,” he said.

The maximum capacity for Sayles Great Space is 350. Cowling can hold more than double that with a maximum capacity of 800. The same safety regulations will apply – students will be required to show their OneCard at the entrance, and guests will have to be registered through Student Activities.

Early in the week, most students were unaware of the location change. The decision was a recent one – a “trial run” according to Baggot.  A newly formed Sayles Dance Committee of seven students and six staff members will discuss more definitive decisions each week.  The committee will hopefully come to a consensus on how Carleton can continue to have Sayles Dances while making them safer.

In the meantime, it’s still hard to gauge student reaction to the move to Cowling.

“I think it’s stupid,” said one senior student. “Sayles is closer to the center of campus. People actually walk in its direction. Cowling is in the middle of nowhere.”

While many students may be averse to changing a tradition engrained in Carleton culture, there is a potential upside: the ease of walking back and forth between the dance and The Cave show featuring mash-up group The Hood Internet.

“A lot of people that I’ve talked to aren’t that upset,” said Sarah Trautman ‘13 about the move to Cowling.
While those living in Evans and Memorial will be spared a long walk, students like Thor Laack-Veeder ‘15 will have to brave the cold. As a resident of Burton, he loved having the Sayles Dance close to his room.
“But it’s a dance,” he said. “People will come.”

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