StompFest continues through social media platforms

Zeta Tau Alpha stepped Puss in Boots in 2018. This year however, instead of hosting StompFest in Waco Hall like years prior, StompFest is being uploaded each day through instagram stories on the Baylor Student Productions account. Lariat File Photo

By Vivian Roach | Staff Writer

The Nu Iota chapter of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc. and the Department of Student Activities is offering a virtual StompFest experience this week through Instagram. Each day, the student productions committee updates their story with special looks into the production, step routines and step tutorials.

Stompfest is an annual all-university step show. It gives organizations the opportunity to learn step, a traditional form of dance rooted in African-American culture.

Members of Zeta Phi Beta recruit step coaches throughout the fall semester, who will prepare teams for the show in the spring. Each team choreographs a themed routine which can be to a variety of different music genres.

Though the show was canceled last month due to the restrictions in place to combat COVID-19, Pflugerville senior and StompFest chair Lauren Lewis said it was still important for StompFest to be brought to instagram.

“Think of someone who was maybe going to compete or see it for the first time and he or she didn’t,” Lewis said. “So now they’re unaware of the incredible opportunities that the event provides for the next year. We didn’t want to lose momentum in building these relationships with teams and coaches.”

This year, StompFest is promoting awareness for the Sickle Cell Anemia Foundation of Central Texas. In normal circumstances, prize money awarded to teams is donated to their philanthropy, ticket sales are donated to Zeta Phi Beta’s national philanthropy, ZHope.

“Since this is a hard time for everyone, we opted for promoting awareness rather than fundraising for the virtual experience,” Lewis said.

Robbinsville, N.J., junior Aliyah Daniel, member of Zeta Phi Beta, said that social media connects communities.

“This virtual experience is reaching so many people and that helps draw awareness to our philanthropy, which is the main goal for the event,” Daniel said.

Though Lewis said she was still disappointed they had to cancel, as a senior, she said it was one of the last opportunities to give back to her organization. She couldn’t wait to show off all of her sisters and student production’s hard work.

“I don’t regret it. It was an invaluable and rewarding experience. I learned so much about what I was capable of doing, especially with the amazing help of Cheryl and Liya of Student Productions,” Lewis said. “That whole team has inspired me and they are incredible.”

StompFest can be viewed on the Baylor student productions Instagram, on Thursday for a step routine for viewers to learn and submit their own. The winner will be announced Friday.