‘RecFest 2017’ to highlight Campus Recreation programs at GVSU

GVL / Emily Frye 
Grand Valley State Rec center hosts a free Zumba night on Wednesday Feb. 24, 2016.

Emily Frye

GVL / Emily Frye Grand Valley State Rec center hosts a free Zumba night on Wednesday Feb. 24, 2016.

Jessica Harsevoort

Move-in week at Grand Valley State University can be exhausting. The light at the end of the tunnel, however, is GVSU’s RecFest. At this fun event, newcomers and returning Lakers can learn about other ways to “move” once the fall semester starts.

During RecFest, students can learn about the programs and services offered by Campus Recreation while exploring the recently renovated facilities.

RecFest 2017 will be held from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 27. This will be a free open-house party, and students only need their GVSU ID to gain access to the Recreation Center.

Once at the Recreation Center, students can participate in a range of activities. Attendees can balance on a slackline or relax with a massage. They can also try their luck with an interactive game, which will enter them to win a Campus Recreation T-shirt or a grand prize.

In addition, there will be individual and team activities such as yoga, sporting competitions, rock climbing and hammocking.

“The purpose of RecFest is to kick off the new school year, welcome students to campus, show off our recently renovated and expanded Recreation Center facilities, and provide an opportunity for participants to figure out what interests them,” said Kayla Cupples, the assistant director of marketing and special events for Campus Recreation.

The target audience for this event is new students. However, anyone can come to see the displays, ranging from intramural sports to student employment.

Last year, there were between 1,200 and 1,500 people browsing the tables set up by clubs, organizations and vendors.

By the end of the event, students may make new friends or reunite with old ones, sign up for tryouts, or eat the free food.

“The goal of RecFest is to spread the word of movement,” said Rachael Chase, who is a student leader in a couple of club sports organizations on campus. “Movement brings friends together, makes the body stronger and the heart happier.”

Campus Recreation programs and services are available to help students support their physical and mental well-being.

“We want to help students, faculty and staff create lifelong healthy habits, get involved, be active and live healthy,” Cupples said.

Yet, while the objective has remained the same, the annual event is constantly evolving. New spaces, new programs and new student resources have been added over time.

Chase’s favorite part of RecFest is seeing the new additions. 

“There are always new clubs and organizations popping up,” she said.

Furthermore, maintaining an active lifestyle offers advantages to those in the GVSU campus community.

“Recreation programs and services offer vast benefits,” Cupples said. “These include physical health, stress relief, socialization, increased retention, student learning and development, and overall wellness.”

Chase has experienced such benefits from being involved. She has met many of her friends though Campus Recreation activities by joining club sports and leadership meetings.

Whether students are looking to beat the “Freshman 15” or explore options to get involved, RecFest 2017 may have something for everyone.

“I cannot be more thankful for what Campus Recreation has done for me during my time at GVSU, and I am excited for another year of RecFest,” Chase said.