After a year off-campus, the Sigma Tau Gamma fraternity celebrated its return to UCA Greek Life with a concert featuring the Ying Yang Twins and Gorilla Zoe on Aug. 22 in the Farris Center.
About 1,300 people attended the event, Ashcraft said. The show began at 9 p.m. and doors opened at 8 p.m.
The line quickly ran out the door and down the sidewalk as hundreds of UCA students waited, tickets in hand, to be admitted.
Even after the show began, people continued to trickle in for about an hour.
“[The concert was] all about impressions and change,” Brent Ashcraft, the fraternity’s alumni adviser, said. “And to let you know that we’re back and back in a good way. Because we haven’t always had the greatest track record.”
In 2011, the fraternity was removed from campus after several members broke into an apartment and assaulted a Sigma Phi Epsilon member. As a result, Sigma Tau Gamma lost 37 members and only 13 were allowed to remain out of the original 50 members.
“We had some members make some bad choices, and we got kicked off campus for a year,” Ashcraft said.
He said the organization worked its “tail off” to revive the fraternity from its previous image.
“We had a great spring last year; we brought in 30 guys,” he said. “We got our GPAs through the roof; community service hours higher than ever. And, we wanted to do this right now – of course it would help with SGA – just to let everybody know, ‘Hey, we’re really back this year.’”
He said the Sigma Tau Gamma fraternity are “known as more of the country boys on campus,” so hosting a concert with popular hip hop artists was out of the ordinary for their organization.
However, he added, it was “the biggest show [our]fraternity has ever put on on this campus.”
Junior Hunter Morris said, “Man, that’s the biggest concert I’ve been to this year.”
The fraternity chose the Ying Yang Twins and Gorilla Zoe for its
“outstanding” performance track record of playing college shows, Ashcraft said.
He added the concert pre-sold about 1,000 tickets. Ashcraft said it took several months to plan the event, and that they did not have their artist “locked up until about right at four weeks ago.”
Planning included heavy security for the concert.
Cops checked attendees’s bags at the entrance and at every path leading to the backstage area.
A fraternity brother was placed at every fire alarm, a measure to ensure no one would pull a fire alarm to sabotage the event.
“There was a lot of on-the-spot hard work,” he said. “But we have some great alumni here that do this for a living.”
The Sigma Tau Gamma fraternity funded the concert through ticket sales, alumni sponsorship and about two-weeks worth of yard sales, Ashcraft said.
The Student Government Association also helped fund the event, he said.
“[SGA] gave us a significant portion of it,” Ashcraft said. “And these guys have worked their tails off selling tickets and getting sponsorships to pay for the rest.”