Wrecking ball shirts benefit Relay for Life
Some students played guitar and sang songs of protest when the now world-famous pendulum was removed at Grand Valley State University. Others remained locked in their rooms watching the Miley Cyrus parody videos until their sides split with laughter.
The Ravines Community Council at GVSU capitalized on the buzz surrounding the incident by selling T-shirts to raise money to benefit Relay for Life.
Jourdan Boychuk, a sophomore at GVSU, is in her first semester as a community service representative for the council. She came up with the idea to create and sell the wrecking ball t-shirts with “reinstall the ball” printed on them after the Twittersphere erupted with posts involving the pendulum removal.
“We were hoping to sell at least 65 to 70 shirts, but the word spread like crazy and we surpassed our goal by a lot,” Boychuk said, adding that about 300 students ordering shirts.
She first brought the idea to a community council meeting, and the group decided to follow through with it. The council allowed students to pre-order the shirts for $10 each on Sept. 18 and 20 .
Mario Sanchez, a sophomore at GVSU, is in his first year as president for the Ravines Community Council.
He said the idea to sell the t-shirts came from seeing the posts on Twitter. Many students were interested in buying shirts, but no one was selling them.
“It was decided by the council to create ‘reinstall the ball’ shirts to sell to the student body as a way for students to express their opinion on the incident, but also to fundraise for a great cause,” Sanchez said.
The Ravines Community Council decided that all of the money raised from the shirt sales would be donated to Relay for Life, which hosts events to honor cancer survivors and raise funds for the fight against cancer. Boychuk said this was a “worthy cause.”
“Relay for Life is a great organization and we found it fitting because October was Cancer Awareness Month,” Boychuk said.
Tim Thimmesch, associate vice president of Facilities Services, was involved in taking down the pendulum.
“With the increased interest in the pendulum and student interaction, it was very important to take a look at the structural integrity and safety of the installation,” Thimmesch said. “The pendulum had been in place for 18 years at the current site. We consequently discovered some concerns that are being addressed.”
However, he was one of the hundreds of people on campus who chose to buy a wrecking ball T-shirt to show support for Relay for Life and to put a positive spin on the incident.
“Relay for Life is an important annual event that promotes student awareness and involvement in support of the needs of others,” Thimmesch said. “We are a very caring community and this is another example.”