The Student Center Programs Council’s (SCPC) annual Six Flags event took place on Sept. 15, opening the park gates to thousands of Tech students and staff exclusively after hours. But it was not just any other day on the rides.
This year’s event coincided with one of Six Flags’ iconic seasonal themes, Fright Fest. And the delights and frights certainly did not die down for Tech’s special night.
Across the park and throughout the night, heavily costumed zombies, witches, clowns and other creepy-looking creatures would jump out from behind or suddenly run up to spook unsuspecting students.
Over the screams of exhilaration and terror, Halloween-themed songs, maniacal laughter and spooky music floated out of the speakers over the park. Smoke machines poured a fog to hang over the air, adding to the eerie aesthetic. Not to mention all the skeletons scattered around the grounds.
Carly Yin, second-year CS, said, “Yeah, it was really enjoyable because all the people put in a lot of effort to scare us and set a spooky vibe for the night. We heard the Transylvanian Orchestra and there were other people doing performances in their costumes which was really cool as well.”
Sheryl Tan, second-year BMED, added, “Tonight was very fun, I think. We went on a lot of rides and luckily we didn’t have to wait in a lot of lines either so I think 10 out of 10 experience so far.”
For some students, however, the theme fell a bit short.
Noemi Carrillo, fourth-year PUBP said, “I went with a few friends who weren’t really into it because the whole thing with fright night is like these actors will just do a bunch of jump scares.”
As an attendee of previous Six Flags events, Carrillo commented, “It also stood in contrast to what I remembered the event being like two years ago because it was fright night like full-on like there was no way to avoid these people, but two years ago it was mostly a normal night and the actors only came out for like 15 minutes at the end of the night … it was a lot more tolerable in years past and we were just caught off guard so we didn’t enjoy it as much as we thought.”
SCPC typically provides discounted tickets as well as free transportation to and back from the park all while the park is closed to the general public, so that Tech students have the chance to socialize and have fun on
the rides when it is less crowded.
“I think giving the entire park to just GT students and a good amount of time, six hours, I think, that’s plenty of time to ride so many rides and have great fun,” said Lija Chang, second-year CM.
This event is one of SCPC’s most popular events that are held throughout the school year and open to not just undergraduates, but all Tech community members. Many upperclassmen are returning ones from how much they enjoyed it in the previous years.
“I went last year to the Six Flags one, that was my first time coming to an SCPC event … I think it’s also just a really fun event to be able to participate in and a good opportunity to get out of campus and have some fun,” Tan said.
Carrillo said, “I like the events that SCPC holds, like I went to an improv thing last semester that was really entertaining and I’ve gone to Six Flags Night in the past and I really enjoyed it!”
For other students, including many first-years and transfers, this was their first time participating in a campus-wide event; marking a milestone in their college journey at Tech.
“So I actually have attended an SCPC event before: I’m currently a transfer student from UGA and I was invited from my friends at Georgia Tech last year so I like how inviting and open the SCPC to people outside of Georgia Tech,” said Chang who participated for the first time in the event as a Jacket.
For most students, this is a great chance to get off of campus on a Friday night and be physically and mentally away from the stressors of school for a little while. Since everyone there is connected to Tech in some way, it is also a good opportunity to meet and talk to new people.
“The main reason I came was to de-stress and see so many of my many friends. But seeing a Georgia Tech staff member win a huge pepper [was my favorite memory of tonight],” Chang said.
Margaret Wei, second-year NEURO, explained that these kinds of events are nice to mingle with new people and catch up with old friends while doing fun activities.
“Actually when we were waiting in line for a ride, we were playing charades and a group of international PhD students joined in and we talked with them, which I otherwise wouldn’t have been able to do when we’re
just on campus,” Wei said.
It also adds to the sense of a Tech community in a way that is not as typical for an official college event. “These kinds of more natural and relaxing environments are when people can actually bond together and be more approachable and have fun,” Yin said.
It can be easy to get swept up in academics here at Tech, but college life is about so much more. Building an inclusive community of people that upholds belonging, school-spirit and lasting relationships is what makes
these years so important.
These kinds of SCPC and other campus-wide events serve as an opportunity for students and staff to do exactly that.
And when people look back on their college years, these exciting times are the memories that will last the longest.
The Six Flags event is just the beginning of many that SCPC have in store for this year. Learn more about campus-wide events and the SCPC at https://studentcenter.gatech.edu/scpc.