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Shushok Shindig: A Taste of Southern Shenanigans


by Mateo Biggs

What got you to come up with the idea of a “Shushok Shindig”?

“Well, that’s a great question– it is hard to say “Shushok Shindig” isn’t it? See if you can see it 3 times sometime –you know I think there are 3 things that came to mind. So one: Kelly and I are from Texas, and so we wanted to bring a little bit of who we are to Roanoke College, and since both of us are from Texas…we have a great affinity for TexMex culture and so this seemed like a really easy way…. And you know, the second thing is we love the President’s Ball and we want to continue the President’s Ball– and we will –but we think it’s important to have 2 seminal events, one in each semester. Especially coming out of a period of retrenchment…it seemed really important to bring the community together and so we thought ‘what could we do?’ and this is what we came up with and it seemed like a really…fun way to bring people together on a beautiful fall day before fall break. And third we wanted to do something that people could learn something– and we are gonna have a line dancing instructor…and I was just inspired by the Black Student Alliance– they just did this terrific faculty, staff, and student basketball game and I was able to play in it. And their motivation was just wanting to– as much as possible –bring people together here at Roanoke.”


What made you want to include the Jam Session?

“So we have so many talented musicians running around on campus– faculty, staff, and students –and we want to invite people to do that. This is an invitation for them to play together. You know, I am not [good with an instrument] but recently my son, Christian, picked up the fiddle…and my wife picked up the banjo so I bet she’ll pull out the banjo for the jam session.”


What encouraged you to bring it to the Athletic Quad?

“Well, that’s a great question. There are good people who know Roanoke College really well who plan these events and we asked for their advice and this is what they suggested, but…– one: on a beautiful fall evening, it’s beautiful and we can situate things in multiple locations and we thought that would be a fun energizing thing. Oh! And another thing I wanted to talk about is that we just wanted to make sure that faculty and staff are included too. The idea of faculty, staff, and students on a Friday night doing fun things, eating good food, and enjoying each other’s company was so indicative of what we think Roanoke College is about…and everyone matters at Roanoke College. Everybody matters just the way they are, no need to change.”