Open mic night at Kathouse

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White and red spotlights shone down on the stage, a microphone stood center stage and a keyboard, drum set and guitars were set up along the back wall. With a disco ball above the barstools and tables near the stage, the Kathouse Lounge, located in Aggieville, was ready for all types of performers for Team Mix-it-Up’s Open Mic last night.

The idea for Open Mic came from the members of the Introduction to Leadership Studies class, as part of their service project.

Class members include Hope Dawson, freshman in pre-psychology; Caysha Williams, sophomore in business administration; Amanda Avritt, sophomore in business administration; and Stephanie Steringer, freshman in mechanical engineering.

Vestoria Simmons, sophomore in pre-journalism and mass communications, said the project was designed to enhance knowledge of community needs and provide service to others.

“We are trying to bring together artistic talents from all genres; from acoustic soul to acoustic rock and everything in between,” said Dawson. “We were given the task of doing something to better our community and one of the things we felt that Manhattan, Kan., in particular needed was more diversity between races, with events that force people to think outside the box.”

Dawson also said in addition to this goal, they would be conducting a canned food drive and asked that, although the cost is free, everyone bring two canned food items which will be donated to the Flint Hills Bread Basket.

At the end of the night, Team Mix-it-Up collected a cardboard box full of cans.

Despite singers, poets, musicians and rappers not starting for some time into the event because of issues with the sound system, every seat was taken from the start.

Many of the students occupying chairs came because someone in Team Mix-it-Up invited them, but there was a handful who had not known about the event and just came out to the Kathouse for their Tuesday night.

“Our expectations were for a lot of people to show up and for people to show off their talents,” said Avritt. “We also hoped that we would end up with an awesome crowd that supports the talent and participates with the talented participants.”

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