Fall 2021 Homecoming Air Jam brings crowds back to Emens for student competition

<p>The Outlet team dances during their performance at Homecoming Week&#x27;s Air Jam event held on Oct. 21 at Emens Auditorium. Outlet took home both overall and independent winner at the event. <strong>Eli Houser, DN</strong></p>

The Outlet team dances during their performance at Homecoming Week's Air Jam event held on Oct. 21 at Emens Auditorium. Outlet took home both overall and independent winner at the event. Eli Houser, DN

Ball State held its annual Air Jam in Emens Auditorium Oct. 21 as part of Homecoming Week. The event saw 14 teams from student organizations across campus compete in a lip sync and dance competition. 

Judged by a panel of alumni and Twitter votes, Air Jam is an opportunity for student organizations to show off their school spirit during Homecoming Week. During the event, Homecoming Royalty is crowned on stage in front of the crowd. 

The event was filled with colorful lights, musical mashups and a roaring audience. When Emens’ staff opened the auditorium doors to the audience, fraternity and sorority groups rushed to get their seats together before the show began.

Marissa Perkowski, Graphic Provided

During the Spring 2021 Homecoming, Air Jam was still held, but not in front of a live audience due to COVID-19 concerns. Participants were required to wear masks during the spring event. 

Even with the threat of COVID-19 still luming, the event returned with a live audience and allowed the performers to unmask while on stage. 

Kate Winslow, senior criminal justice, sociology and digital forensics triple major, was the Homecoming Steering Committee Air Jam chair and helped emcee the event. Winslow said she thought the event went well, considering it was the first time the event has been held in person since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

“I was definitely very surprised by the crowd,” Winslow said.  “Normally, they don't cheer as loud or as long as they [did], but obviously, the support is always a good thing.”

Winslow added she was happy to see such a large turnout at the event. 

Avery Gilbert, junior theatre education major, was part of the independent team Outlet. Outlet took home the overall and independent winners rewards from Air Jam with its performance. 

Gilbert said his team worked hard to prepare and he enjoyed seeing it all come together in a win.

“I'm not even going to lie to you, I was so nervous,” Gilbert said. “But then, the second that I heard our names called, it was a big relief off of my shoulders. I felt very overwhelmed with happiness.” 

Contact Eli Houser with comments at ejhouser@bsu.edu

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