Although its facilities are currently under construction, the LSU Recreation Complex is not letting that slow them down. UREC on the Geaux, which is now in its second year, will be found again at the Parade Ground from 4p.m.-7p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 26.
Initially proposed in the spring of 2014 by LSU Student Government, UREC on the Geaux began as an attempt to connect students with UREC.
“When we started construction, and some space started to be lost, there were some concerns from Student Government about student access,” said Matthew Boyer, the Associate Director of Programs and Outreach. “Those concerns made us think about solutions on how to bring UREC to the students, which then led to the idea of UREC on the Geaux.”
By putting the event at the Parade Ground, the UREC staff believes it reaches more than the students who already use its facilities and services. Over 500 people are expected for the first event of this semester.
“We just want everyone to have a good time,” Boyer said. “So we can try to cater to everybody, we’re going to bring over a wide variety of activities.”
Such activities range from frisbee golf to fitness challenges, volleyball (with a beach ball), to a rock climbing wall.
“There’s so much to showcase in terms of activities, so we really try to keep students interested. One event might feature Street Beats, a dance class offered by UREC, while the next one might have yoga. There could be a home run derby going on next to a punt-pass-kick challenge,” Boyer said.
According to Boyer, however, providing fun for students is only half of UREC on the Geaux’s mission. The other is raising awareness about safety, specifically bike safety. Last fall, this issue became especially apparent when the university lost a graduate student and former UREC employee due to a biking accident.
“We want students to have fun obviously, but we also want them to be safe and be mindful of the different hazards, a large one being bike safety,” Boyer said.
Glow in the dark shirts will be provided for the first 200 students to show up and sign a bike safety pledge.
Afterward, around 5:30 p.m., staff will begin handing out glow sticks, bracelets and necklaces. There will also be several glow in the dark activities, including neon sports balls. Rock wall climbers will also be equipped with headlamps.
“We really want all the students to come out and try it, experience it. I think people could learn a lot about what the UREC has to offer. I think they’d really enjoy the whole nighttime theme,” said Boyer.
Unlike last semester, UREC on the Geaux will only be held three times. There will be one on Feb. 22 to celebrate National Recreation Sports and Fitness Day. The second will be on April 26 as a way for students to have fun and unwind at the end of the year.
The UREC Complex is set to finish in late January of 2017, which Boyer said he believes is going to be “an absolutely fantastic facility.”
“Until then, however, we just want to do everything we can to keep serving students,” said Boyer.
Photo courtesy of University Recreation