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10,000 Maniacs To Play at Spring Weekend

Sarah Y. Keightley
News Editor

10,000 Maniacs will be kicking off the annual Spring Weekend on Thursday, April 22.

The bid for the 10,000 Maniacs was made last week, and the band accepted, according to Wendy C. Vit '93, liaison between an agent and the Student Center Committee. The deal "happened really fast. They were the only group we put in a bid for," she said.

According to Cliff B. Schmidt '93, chair of SCC, his group focuses on the concert, while the Undergraduate Association Social Committee plans the Spring Weekend activities.

Alice Lin '95, UA social chair, is working with the social chairs of the different classes to coordinate Spring Weekend. "Our goal is to have a central theme-- make it a string of events," Lin said. "Last year it seemed like the concert was the main focus." She hopes this year's activities will be part of the whole weekend, rather than separate events.

Several groups are planning activities, which will include annual and new events, Lin explained. The committee is still seeking other students or groups who want to plan events, said Lynetta S. Frasure '95, a UA representative.

Some events which are already being planned include Sigma Alpha Epsilon's on-campus party, Delta Upsilon's steak fry, Sigma Chi's spring olympiad, and an International Student Association cultural festival.

The UA is "thinking about a carnival," Lin added. At last week's UA meeting, $1,000 was allocated for the carnival.

"The enthusiasm is definitely there, but whether or not we'll be able to realize that -- at least this spring -- is not definite yet," Frasure said. More money needs to be allocated for the carnival to take place, she said.

Concert promises to be big

SCC expects close to 3,000 students to attend this year's concert. This is "bigger than we've ever had," Schmidt said. "We had REM in 1984 or 1985, but I think this one may be bigger."

Not many major groups were available, Vit said. "We were very surprised to get" 10,000 Maniacs, she said.

Schmidt said that even though 10,000 Maniacs accepted the bid, "it's never definite" until the contract is signed. He did say that the group would "most likely" perform. He added that last year, SCC did not sign the contract with the Violent Femmes until the day of the show.

SCC is "not going to advertise until we've looked at the contract," Schmidt said. The contract includes the band's hospitality arrangements. He said that some bands want alcohol, which the SCC cannot provide, put in the contract. Still, he is 90 percent certain the 10,000 Maniacs will perform.

Vit said she has been getting a positive reaction from students. "This is the first year where I have not had to explain to people that this is a good group," she said.

"Everybody seems pretty excited. The biggest thing is the name people know," Schmidt said.

Schmidt called the bid a "good deal." The bid was for $20,000, and the band will provide their own sound equipment and lights. Last year the Violent Femmes played for $14,500, and the SCC had to make other arrangements for sound and light equipment, Schmidt said.

For MIT students, tickets will be $10 in advance and $12 at the door. For other students, tickets will be $12 in advance and $14 at the door. The concert is open only to students "for safety" reasons, Schmidt said.

These prices are still subject to change, Vit said.

Ticket sales usually balance out with the cost of the band, Schmidt said. However, SCC usually takes a loss of about $10,000 because of other costs including security, the stage, publicity, and licenses.

Weekend includes many events

Although the concert will mark the official beginning of Spring Weekend, several events will follow.

Dennis H. Son '96, of SC, said his fraternity is working to bring back the spring olympiad competition. It is going to be "one big obstacle course," he said. "Most likely we'll rent out fields or have something in Lobby 10," he added.

DU's annual Spring Weekend steak fry "has been going on since the 60s or 70s," said John M. Jacobs '94. Usually about 400 people attend the steak fry, but only 300 came last year due to rain, he said.

SAE is planning to hold its Sailor Party, a fund-raiser for muscular dystrophy. According to Jeffrey J. Breedlove '94, the traditional sailor theme was started again last year. He thinks the party will be bigger this year because alcohol will be served to those over 21. Last year, SAE was under restrictions and could not serve alcohol.

"Spring Weekend should be a time people look forward to," Lin said. "At some campuses it's known as one huge nonstop party, but our goal for Spring Weekend is not to be identical to another school."