An old-fashioned saloon scene took over the ballroom commons the night of Nov. 4, as cowboys and cowgirls gambled the night away during UVUSA’s first Cowboy Casino Night.
“Basically, what was projected to happen is exactly what’s happening: good clean fun,” said Joe Jurisic, the special events chair over the event.
Jurisic went on to explain that the event had been a “filler” event for the UVU Women’s Expo that was supposed to take place at the same time. Things did not fall into line for the expo to happen, so the special events committee organized Cowboy Casino Night to take its place.
The night consisted of Western cowboy- and cowgirl-styled attire worn by those attending, as well as decorations such as balloons, plenty of Southwestern chips and salsa to go around and some classic casino games such as craps, Texas Hold ‘em, roulette and blackjack.
Since gambling is illegal in Utah, rather than playing for keeps, students were given a cup full of fake coins at the door, and the event was basically a tournament to see who could collect the most coins by the end of the night. The champion, second place and third place gamblers were each given trophies for their outstanding efforts.
For those students that weren’t into the gambling as much as others, there was also a raffle for small prizes that anyone who attended the event had a chance to win.
When student Jessica Jeppson was asked why she attended, she responded, “To win some money, meet some hot cowboys. Basically, just have a fun time.”
Whether it was winning things or “hot cowboys” that got people to come out to the event, organizers considered it to be a success.
“It’s a huge success and we are really happy with the way things came together,” said Na’Shaya Gilliam, another member of the special events committee. This is something that the committee hopes to turn into a regular occurrence on campus, bringing out more and more students each time.