Before final exams get underway in a couple of weeks, University of New Orleans students were treated to an only-in-New Orleans way to unwind: crawfish, jambalaya, games and music on the lakefront.
Tuesday, April 25th, marked the 36th annual SUCbAUF and the day was greeted with enthusiasm.
“It’s awesome,” said student Michaela Dennies as she sat in a circle of friends, one round of crawfish already under their belts. “I think this is a great opportunity for us to all come together as a community and enjoy each other’s company.”
“I’m new, and it just makes you feel very welcome,” fellow student Calie Frangella said.
The theme this year for SUCbAUF (pronounced suck-off) was “Lovebugs on the Lakefront” and included music provided by Tidal Wave Brass Band and Victor Atkin’s Text Messengers. For the brave and adventurous, there was a rock wall to conquer.
Romeo Hise and Hailey Boeckl, both first-year students, made a beeline for the wall. It was their first SUCbAUF and they were excited to learn about the no-cost benefits.
“It’s really fun,” said Hise after removing the safety harness from his climbing trip.
“And it was free!” Added Boeckl. “I don’t know when I will get a chance to do this for free again.”
The duo said they didn’t know what to expect from the event, but was pleasantly surprised.
“I didn’t think they would have all of these stations,” Hise said. “It’s cool!”
For others, there were thousands of pounds of crawfish, corn and potatoes to devour.
“This year marks my 11th SUCbAUF and I have to say, it’s still my favorite way to ring in the end of the academic year,” said LeeAnne Sipe, associate dean of student affairs. “The energy is just the best—who can be stressed with pounds of free crawfish to eat? Not me!”
The main entrees, piled into pirogues and dished up by volunteers, were the culinary creations of Jerry Folse and his team from Folse Cajun Country Catering. The company has been boiling for the event for over 15 years, said Joy Ballard, associate director for Student Involvement and Leadership, who helped organize the event.
“They always do a great job,” Ballard said.
While the entertainment and attractions have changed over the years, the goal has remained the same, Ballard said.
“For 36 years, SUCbAUF’s goal has been to simply provide students a place to unwind with crawfish, beer (if they are over 21), and unprecedented fun,” said Ballard. “This is a great event for students, faculty and staff to wrap up the semester.”