By Angelina Burkholder | Echo
Valentine's Day arrives with mixed responses. The couples love it. The singles hate it. But tonight, the ladies of 4th Bergwall, at least the single ladies, will celebrate living life without romantic love. In fact, it's become a tradition, and it all started with a red dress.
As a senior, alumna Lauren Sheard held the first single awareness party last year on 4th Bergwall. Valentine's Day was approaching, and Sheard had a brand new homemade red dress hanging in her closet. Stranded as three of her closest friends left with blushing cheeks to celebrate love with boyfriends, Sheard couldn't resist the temptation of a good time and an opportunity to wear the dress she had created from scratch.
"Since it's not like me to be left behind by a holiday, I decided I would throw a celebration for all the single girls on my floor," Sheard said. "It provided the perfect excuse to wear a ridiculous dress and hopefully provide a source of entertainment to my friends for a few hours."
So the party planning began. The entire night focused around being single and awkward. Sheard began the night showing the death scene from "Titanic."
"It really set the tone," she said.
From there each girl had to complete a predetermined task such as finding a stranger to kiss on the cheek, telling an embarrassing relational story or choosing the most marriageable girl in the room.
The night also included a powerpoint presentation of "Hot Celebrity Showdown" and an activity to release boys from the past. After writing the name of lost or forgotten love on a piece of paper, each girl chewed up the paper and spit it out. Sheard ended the night by passing out homemade ironic or depressing Valentines to the girls with sayings such as "I'd love you even if you were so ugly that everyone died.
"It's always good to let the people around you know that you love and appreciate them, even if it's just through absolutely ridiculous activities and semi-insulting valentines," Sheard said.
This year, juniors Courtney Sullivan and Malinda Hall, 4th Berg's PAs, organized their own spin-off of Sheard's party, planning the second celebration in her honor.
"I liked it so much that I wanted to do it again this year," Sullivan said. "I hope girls this year have as much fun as I did and will want to continue to do this."
Tonight, while couples stare starry-eyed at each other across cliched candle-lit dinners, there will be a group of rambunctious ladies celebrating bare ring fingers and carefree hearts, falling in love with singleness at Olive Garden.
"I think it's important to realize that you're not alone and you have friends around you who love you and support you," Sullivan said. "You don't need to be in a relationship to celebrate Valentine's Day."
The 4th Berg girls will head back to their floor to finish off the night with activities and games all in the name of singleness.
"When I threw the party last year I had no intention of it being repeated," Sheard said. "I'm only sorry I won't be there to experience version two."