If you, like me, have been spending long hours endlessly procrastinating, scrolling through your Facebook newsfeed, it is more than likely that the words “be bright” have appeared. The words are the catchy slogan for the newly rebranded Xavier ball, being held this upcoming Friday 23 October. The Saint spoke to Drew Silverman, Executive Director of the event, who gave us a glimpse of what to expect at this year’s event.
During my time here in St Andrews, I have heard people rave about the “amazing” Bongo Ball more than once, spiking my curiosity as to why Ms Silverman and her committee decided to change the name. The ball was conceived to raise funds for the Xavier Project charity , started by St Andrews alumnus Edmund Page in 2008 after visiting Kampala , Uganda , where – upon the sights he saw compelled him to begin a charity focused on education, microfinance and media. The charity has now obtained backing of both the University and the United Nations: a testament to its hard work and commitment over the years. In retrospect, the name change now seems quite fitting, though visions of Bongo Ball might not come straight to mind, awareness of the charity will ensue, and, in spite of this change, we are still promised “the same vibe” Bongo was known for.
The event, being held at Crail Airfield, an old, abandoned cinema, 20 minutes outside St Andrews, is “a great chance to burst the Bubble”, and with its dark, almost grungy appearance, it is bound to be different from any other event seen within St Andrews, creating an “awesome party in a unique setting.” Bonfires are set to light up the night, and an impressive bar, promising “the most inexpensive drinks” yet seen at any ball, will be open to guests, alongside a complimentary free drink. There will also be plenty of Vita coconut water to keep the guests hydrated and offer a fun non-alcoholic alternative. For the foodies out there, Blackhorn will have a stall up and running, with each guest being entitled to a voucher for a free portion of chips.
Shedding the old image of Bongo Ball, a night of animal prints and black tie, Xavier Ball encourages partygoers to don their brightest neons and patterned outfits. Rafiki Fabrix products, are “the outfit of choice, embodying the spirit of the event in the best way possible,” said Ms Silverman. These have been on sale outside the Vic, which has been a great way to raise further awareness and funds for the charity, providing the “bright” clothing you will be needing for Xavier Ball, and supporting Xavier’s microfinance project providing income to refugee children.
If you are still not sold on why you should clear your schedule for Friday, all proceeds from the ticket sales go towards the Xavier Project. If a group of three went to Xavier Ball, the £110 spent out would be able to fund one year of a child’s education. With a ball featuring comfy clothing, a unique venue, drinks and an impressive cause, Xavier Ball is definitely the event to attend this Friday night.