Quadfest II

Signs of Summer &
Night of the Screaming Cathode Ray Tube (NSCRT)

Quadfest II seems to be known for two things: starting the T-shirt extravaganza (which has now become part of SocComm) and NSCRT (a "rave-like" atmosphere inside Harrington and the brainchild of N. Harrison Ripps). There were several T-shirts for this Quadfest, including the lame and navy blue Signs of Summer shirt which could bake a Quadfest member in mere seconds under the hot sun.

When it came time to plan the evening events for Quadfest II, it was difficult to find an affordable (and good) band who could follow They Might Be Giants' performance from the original Quadfest. This is where NSCRT was born.

Harrison writes, "As Major Events Chair (after the renaming of the Concerts committee and before the merging of Major and Special Events into MSEC), I was in charge of planning and executing SocComm's piece of Quadfest II. My budget for the event was $20K. Initially, I tried to land the Stone Temple Pilots for a concert, but their price tag hit $45K in a hurry so it was time for a new plan.

Chris Jachimowicz, the dean of student affairs, talked to me about how we could use the money to build an -event- instead of blowing it all on one show. That's when NSCRT started to take shape.

We split the money into two pots: $10K for entertainment, $10K for goodies.

For entertainment, I booked:

  • A video dance party package
  • A make-your-own-video booth (sort of like karaoke, but they film you with cheesy effects and give you the tape)
  • A virtual reality game (the two stand-up units with the VR helmets)
  • Two "semi-permanent" tattoo artists (they worked in magic marker)
  • Farusha, the psychic

    We packed the whole shootin' match into Harrington:

  • Video dance party on the gym floor
  • Make-your-own-video on the loading dock
  • VR near the loading doc
  • Tattoo artists on the mezzanine
  • Farusha in the conference room

    Now, this is all well and good, but we knew the event would go nowhere without good publicity and good free stuff.

    For publicity, we did a flyer blitz--it listed out all of the events... and all of the door prizes. Ten thousand bucks worth of door prizes.

    For during the event, we bought hundreds of goodies for randomly handing out:

  • PEZ dispensers
  • Cheap sunglasses with "NSCRT" emblazoned on the sides
  • T-shirts with "NSCRT" on the front and the flyer reprinted on the back.

    Then there were the big-time prizes. I don't remeber exactly what they were, but it was something like:
    5 $50 gift certificates
    4 $100 gift certificates
    3 portable stereos (am/fm/cd)
    2 Sega whatever-they-were-selling-that-year
    1 Laptop Computer (which alone cost about $4K)

    Personally, I had a blast. My goal, to see the pasty, geeky hordes dancing their booty off and having a good time, was realized. Of course, it helped that they were all waiting to find out if they had just won a laptop. :-)

    Since I left WPI, I have heard tell of at least one event (HAZMAT) that drew on the style concept for NSCRT. I know that NSCRT wouldn't have been possible if Chris Jachimowicz wasn't there to help me develop the idea and keep me on task during the execution.

    Special thanks to N. Harrison Ripps and Amy Marr for providing information and shairing their memories with us.

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    created and maintained by The Quadfest Archives. Last updated 07-jun-04