SpringFest to return with events as COVID-19 protocols change


Photo by Shield Archive

Nathan Payne, the program coordinator for Center for Campus Life, passes out SpringFest 2020 T-shirts at SpringFest 2021.

Ian Young, Staff Writer

SpringFest is back with food, concerts and events for the first time since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. The three-day event is scheduled from April 6 – 8, 2022, and is bringing back past SpringFest activities.

The SpringFest schedule was announced on the Campus Life and USI SpringFest Instagram accounts around 2:00 p.m. Tuesday. SpringFest is an annual campus event dedicated to celebrating the change of weather as well as “campus spirit.” The event is planned by the Activities Programming Board and is advised by the Center for Campus Life.

SpringFest 2020 was canceled due the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, and SpringFest 2021 had small events due to social distance protocols. 

“I was mostly a spectator during SpringFest last year,” Cameron Cox, senior radio and television major, said. “The only thing that really happened were T-shirts being passed out.”

The T-shirts passed out in SpringFest 2021 where the SpringFest 2020 T-shirts. 

Cox said the marketing for the upcoming event really got him interested in SpringFest again. “I think it’ll be the best SpringFest in the past two years. COVID-19 hit the event really hard and seeing all of this buildup makes me think the event is getting back to what it was.”

SpringFest before the COVID-19 pandemic used to consist of food trucks, festivals, parties, activities and concerts including past concerts with Luke Bryan and Plain White T’s. 

The Instagram live announcing SpringFest 2022 was led by Nathan Payne, the program coordinator for Center for Campus Life.

Payne said safety protocols for COVID-19 are of the utmost importance when coming up with big events like this. “Luckily, for this year we were able to focus on safety while bringing back some of our more popular events.”

SpringFest 2022 will have festivals, cultural events, free food and even concerts. Krigarè, a pop and synth artist, and Kid Quill, a hip-hop and rap artist from Shelbyville, Ind., will be leading a concert at 7 p.m. April 8 in the Screaming Eagles Arena.

“Concerts are coming back, and there is no reason why USI cannot join in on the fun,” Payne said. “From what I hear, students are desperate to find something to do, so we are excited to offer something free to students that they get to experience.”

“SpringFest is not doing shirts this year,” Payne said. “SpringFest is doing bucket hats.”

Payne said the hats will be “low-key” and will be given out every single day of SpringFest alongside all of the scheduled activities.

Here is a list of the additional SpringFest activities:

  • PANAS will be holding a traditional, Panamanian carnival with free food and a large party from 5 to 8 p.m. April 6 on The Quad. 
  • There will be trackless train rides from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 7 and April 8 on The Quad. 
  • Lolly’s Pop Bar, a local food truck, will be passing out free ice cream popsicles provided from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. April 7 and April 8 outside Rice Plaza. 
  • The Hispanic Student Union is hosting a Loteria night starting at 5 p.m. April 7 in the Fireside Lounge. 
  • The Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. will be hosting a day party from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. April 7. It will feature games, DIY craft tables and free snacks on the Rice Plaza.
  • South Asian Student Association will be holding a Holi Festival from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. April 7 on The Quad. It will be a traditional Indian festival with Indian food and tie-dye shirts. 
  • At 6:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m., Carter Hall will be holding a trivia game called the Nerdology Gameshow.
  • The Screaming Eagles Arena will hold nine-hole mini golf and lightspeed arena games from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. April 8.