For students passing by last week, the front of the Axe Library was transformed into a Hawaiian beach.
The Axe Library hosted their fifth annual “Luau on the Lanai” on Aug. 29 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Partners of the library set up tables to inform students about the services they offer. Students were able to interact with the people at the booths while participating in games and activities, and receiving free food.
“I think the best part about it is the ability to interact with the students in a way that isn’t the typical format of a classroom,” said Jorge Leon, learning and outreach librarian. “The fact that it’s fun, it’s social, its interactive. It’s a way to show the fun side of us with the students.”
Leon was one of the facility members who started the Luau on the Lanai five years ago.
“New students don’t always have a clear idea of what libraries have within them, so it’s a way for me to say we want different partners to showcase everything they have and it’s just fun,” Leon said.
Students were able to play games while learning about the services the library and its partners have to offer, such as hula-hooping and ladder toss, and participating in photo booths and painting.
“It’s fun, I hula-hooped, I didn’t think I could hula hoop,” said Trinity Wilkinson, freshman in psychology. “I don’t know anybody, but the more I go to events the more I meet people.”
Organizations assisting the library staff in the event included the Writing Center, Students for Violence Prevention, Student Success Programs, Axe Grind, and Library Services.
“Universities are more than just going to class, it’s growing as a person,” said Glenn Storey, assistant director of the Writing Center. “Events like this allow them to know where they can go on campus to get the information they need to be more experienced, well rounded adults when they leave campus.”
Students gathered outside of the library to eat lunch provided by the library staff.
“I think this is a really exciting event, for people to come out and have a fun an interaction with the different organizations that are on campus,” Wren Lowrey, sophomore in biology said. “I think it is important to have these events just because it gets people engaged in campus life. Go out and interact with other people, have fun and maybe get a little bit of sun.”
Lowrey was also tabling with the Student for Violence Prevention where she gave out information and stickers. Other booths also handed out prizes and gifts, such as leis.
“The leis are always really popular, the free food is really popular, it’s just a good way to get kids to know that the library isn’t just about boring stuff, it’s fun too,” said Stephanie Willis, library assistant in government documents.
The event was Hawaiian-themed and has been since its inception.
“”I’ve missed the beach and I’ll bring some of that fun to Kansas,” Leon said.