Editor's note: In honor of the university's centennial year, The Daily News is counting down 100 days to the university's celebration Sept. 6 with 100 of Ball State's most famous traditions and figures. Check back each day to read about Cardinal history.
Hosted every Saturday night of the academic year, Late Nite offers students a variety of activities and food as part of the “best party on campus.”
The organization, which functions on the motto “By students for students,” is executed through student-led programming efforts.
Late Nite officially began in 2001 after various students expressed concerns regarding a lack of alcohol-free social opportunities. In its first year, 12 programs were hosted with funding from Lilly Endowment Inc., Campus Activities Fund Board and Housing and Residence Life.
Due to its success, ten programs for the 2002-03 academic year were planned. By 2003, the program reached more than 13,500 students throughout the academic year, according to Ball State’s website.
Because it was so popular, in 2004, Late Nite occurred every Saturday throughout the academic year, totaling 23 events.
That trend remained as Late Nite is currently held every Saturday from 9 p.m to 1 a.m.. Various activates and food choices are correlated to the theme, which rotates weekly in an effort to reach students with various interests, according to the Ball State website.
Themes for the 2018 fall semester include “Cirque Du Late Nite,” “The Roarin’ Late NIte” and “The Wizarding World of Late Nite.” And while the theme changes, nearly every Late Nite has arts and crafts, a dance room and a film.
Late Nite is free to all students with a Ball State ID, and guests over the age of 16 cost $5. However, entrance to Late Nite during family weekend, which is Sept. 22 this year, is free for everyone.
The biggest Late Nite program, Late Nite Carnival, occurs the Friday before finals week during the spring semester each year. The C-1 commuter parking lot is shut down and replaced with rides, games, prizes, live music, refreshments and entertainers.
Entrance to the carnival, rides and some food is free for students and $5 to the public.