“For the kids.” — the sorority Kappa Alpha Theta’s adopted motto for their fundraising work for the organization Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), as provided by the sorority’s Director of Service and Philanthropy, Maryn Cover. Their motto was only strengthened after the sorority produced their sixth annual KATwalk event last Friday. Nearly two hours of watching members from both Greek and non-Greek organizations strut through the Thwing Ballroom in formal wear, eco-friendly creations and outfits showing their organization’s pride led Kappa Alpha Theta to one of their most successful KATwalk events in the last few years— all while reminding the audience of the best and worst of the 1990s.
Since the founding of Kappa Alpha Theta at CWRU in 2007, they have maintained the national relationship the sorority has with CASA, which provides children who are going through the foster system with a consistent adult figure and role model. They remain with the child until he or she finds a permanent residence, and are often still involved with the child’s life afterwards. Kappa Alpha Theta’s president, Elizabeth Vitale, provided information which exemplified that each year the sorority raises more than the previous year from KATwalk; this year their funds reached over $3,000 to be donated to CASA or Lorain County.
While CASA has a serious mission statement, Kappa Alpha Theta, along with the help of the various other organizations as models, were able to keep the event lighthearted and entertaining. The four categories that organizations had to prepare for were (1) eco-friendly, (2) classy, (3) their representation of their own organization’s pride and (4) “I LOVE THE 90’s”. Across all categories, some groups chose to take the traditional route, but some of the highlights of the show were when the various groups embraced the theme “I LOVE THE 90’s!”
While most of the classy category was filled with suits, gowns and even a tuxedo or two, some groups embraced CWRU’s motto of “Thinking Beyond the Possible” and showed up as inspired characters such as James Bond and Posh Spice.
The next category was “green,” which strived to feature eco-friendly attire and put all of the participating organization’s creativity to the test. This segment was similar to an episode of “Project Runway”— there were dresses of all lengths and designs made out of newspaper and other recycled goods like CDs. The greatest source of comedic creativity came from the orientation leaders’ group as they channeled the character of Oscar the Grouch in a human-sized trash can, encouraging recycling. Moments like that, or their ending chant, which involved various orientation leaders throughout the audience, were probably what won the judges over, securing their second-place ranking.
When it came to showing off their own organizations’ pride, each team was decked out in as much clothing with their group’s name on it as possible. Zeta Beta Tau even went as far as to open an umbrella with their symbols on it, however, maybe that was bad luck, seeing as they were not able to take first place from the Class Officers Coalition.
In the final category of “I LOVE THE 90’s”, every group had a different perspective on the theme. Some groups showed up in typical 90’s streetwear, including snapbacks, Dr. Martens, parachute pants and neon color-blocked jackets. Other groups were inspired by iconic characters of each of our 90’s childhoods; specifically, Beta Theta Phi represented themselves as the beloved superheroes Power Rangers, and Alpha Phi and Theta Chi paid their respects to the Spice Girls and Pokémon, respectively.
The event overall was fun, upbeat and at times hysterical to watch, but most importantly Kappa Alpha Theta was able to spread their motto “For the Kids,” so that even first-time attendees and participants such as Perry Billett from Zeta Psi and Armaan Hasan from Zeta Beta Tau knew what they were contributing to. When asked if either models Billett or Hasan would participate again if given the chance to, both enthusiastically responded “yes,” although Billett also stated that along with supporting a great cause, KATwalk would be able to “jump-start his modeling career.”
With Kappa Alpha Theta’s record fundraising, their successful turnout and enthusiastic participants, the main improvements that can be seen to be made for KATwalk is that it should continue to grow and include more organizations, a goal that is endorsed by Cover and likely the rest of Kappa Alpha Theta as well.