Throughout this week, each college has thrown their winter ball and it’s safe to say that they’ve all been a great success!
Each college hosts an annual winter ball, and as a proud Cartmelian, I attended Cartmel’s winter ball at Dunkenhalgh spa in Blackburn. Grizedale’s ball was also held in Blackburn, and the Lonsdale ball sent the students to Blackpool’s Village Hotel.
These were definitely nights to remember, packed with quizzes, great food and all the fun music you’d associate with events such as these ones. Even though it’s only been ten weeks, the comradery and friendships made this term seem to have lasted a lifetime, and there’s no place that brings that feeling to life like a Winter Ball.
Christmas trees, festive décor and beautifully lit up table centrepieces made the nights a truly magical experience, and throughout the night, students queued to take photos in Christmassy spots.
As students entered the venue, the wonderful staff were waiting with drinks set out on tables as a free kickstart to the evening. Both alcoholic and non-alcoholic options were available, ensuring inclusivity for everyone. Catering at large events such as this can often be questionable, but the three-course meal didn’t disappoint, with traditionally festive meals as well as other options for students to choose from.
Uni student finances, particularly during the cost of living crisis, meant that for many students the price of the night factored into decisions about attending the college ball.
Cartmel tickets cost £34, covering venue hire, a three course meal, DJ hire and coach travel to and from the venue, seeming to be a pretty reasonable price. For me, the unanimous decisions the colleges made for coach travel to and from the venue made the whole evening a hassle free and calmer evening, and the factoring of this into the ticket price saved us all a fortune in taxi prices!
One of the most memorable and enjoyable parts of the night was the award ceremony. Through the weeks before the ball, students were given the opportunity to vote friends for awards including ‘best dressed’ and ‘keenest fresher’. The moments were praised as being “really funny”.
The casual and jovial atmosphere really cemented a community spirit, with Lonsdale attendees mentioning that “the different sports societies [were] bantering with the JCR throughout”.
The dancefloor opened up after the meals were finished, with great music and a sense of community shining through as each college got together and made a night of it.
It was a fantastic night, and the Winter ball is something I would absolutely recommend, especially freshers’ for “A great way for the freshers to celebrate finishing their first term at Lancaster.”