On October 28, Mines’ students gathered in the Steinhauer Fieldhouse for the campus’ first ever After Dark, a national event that travels to twelve campuses a year and is aimed at getting the word out about Christianity.
The event consisted of performances from Tedashii and Matt Wertz, with a speech from Joe White titled “Is Jesus Relevant Today?”
“It is basically a one night event where music and message meet,” Caleb Waitsman, leader of the event, said.
“It is about opening the doors to a fun event so wide that an entire campus can feel included in something bigger than themselves. We want to look past darkness and hate to experience love in a new way, while also having a great time surrounded by people on campus,” Ben Eigner, a student who helped to advertise and coordinate the event, explained.
Given that the demand for After Dark is relatively high with only a few campuses hosting the event per year, Waitsman explained that Mines was chosen as a host after a few students got together and called the After Dark Team in Missouri to throw Mines’ name into the hat for After Dark’s 2015-2016 tour.
It was estimated that there would be approximately 800-900 people who would attend the event and within the first half hour there were well over 700 attendees. In total, Waitsman estimated that “over 900 people attended from across the West Denver Area” despite the fact that “Mines is one of the smaller schools to have ever hosted an After Dark event.”
The turnout at the event can mostly be attributed to a significant amount of advertising, which consisted of numerous flyers that could be found in almost every classroom on campus. “The administration at Mines was super helpful in allowing students to advertise for the event,” Waitsman said. “We did all we could to make sure every student knew when and where the event was being held, and we feel like we accomplished that goal.”
Despite some of the negative responses to the advertising, Brittany Marshall, the other student to have helped bring After Dark to Mines said, “Mines never has lots of advertising for events. So when there is lots of advertising, nobody really likes it.”
Although the advertising succeeded in its goal of attracting students to the event, it also generated negative responses claiming that the event was not advertised honestly.
“The advertisements were supposed to be visually appealing so there was an aspect to making them look cool. If you read the posters it said what the talk was about. It isn’t true to say that the event was falsely advertised.” Brittany Marshall said.
Eigner and Waitsman both said they were thankful that the event came to Mines this year.
“The response was incredible. I felt like everyone had a great time and walked out knowing they made the most of their Wednesday night,” Waitsman said.
It terms of lasting effects on campus, Marshall said there has already been a significant impact.
“After Dark won’t be here again, the most they visit a single campus is once in a four year period. But what’s cool is that this Friday there is going to be a huge ministry wide worship night. After Dark tied the community together and helped to bring religions discussion to campus. I think it is good for people to talk about religion in general,” Marshall said.
Above: Tedashii and Matt Wertz perform at After Dark on October 28th in Steinhauer Fieldhouse.
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