After Dark, a student organization dedicated to providing fun social alternatives to the Isla Vista party scene, held a 1950s murder-mystery dinner party last month at the Hub.
Hosted by a Donald Trump impersonator dubbed “Ronald Trump,” the dinner party was held at a pretend Los Vegas Casino with After Dark spending over $5,500 to cover expenses such as catered food, costumes and performing actors.
According to After Dark director and second year global studies major Danielle Bebout, the club throws one major event every single quarter and invests a great deal of organization money in order to do so.
“I know we are definitely trying to do an Ice-Skating event in the winter quarter,” Bebout said, “also based on really good results we are seeing from this … we are probably going to try to strive for an even bigger, better murder mystery in the spring.”
Sadaf Gazari, After Dark Marketing and Social Media Director and third year economics and accounting major, said the organization hosted the “expensive and high class event” to build a community where students can experience great memories without having to “go out and get trashed on IV”.
“If I wasn’t part of After Dark, I would still attend these events because they are actually really fun,” Gazari said. “You just build memories with your friends. Attending them with your friends will make them five times more fun than showing up alone.”
Gazari also said the club’s events are inclusive to everyone, including those whom do participate in drinking activities as long as “you keep it on the down low” during participation of After Dark activities.
According to Gazari, although the event was very expensive, they charged $5 for the tickets in accordance to After Dark’s goal of absolute inclusivity.
“For the most part the [events] are free, the only time we charge a small amount is to make sure you attend the event and don’t just waste someone’s spot that really wants to come,” Gazari said. “So this is almost for free for every event.”
The dinner party was well received by the attendees like fourth year political science major Joey Garcia, who said he felt the party was “enlightening, mysterious, frightening, and fun.”
“This is my first activity doing After Dark. I enjoyed it. I will definitely be coming back,” Garcia said. “I feel like I missed out of the four years I’ve been here.”
Matt Myers, a sophomore political science major and an actor recruited from the UCSB Improv group Improvability, stated that not only did he enjoy the show; he also found it as great opportunity to support members of UCSB Arts and Lectures.
“There are always performing arts events going on Campus. There are really talented actors and actresses out there who are putting out great shows.” Says Myers. “I think it’s important for them to get an opportunity to perform.
Leoda Valenzuela, a fourth year English and Spanish double major and president of After Dark, says that although the club is dedicated to throwing “at least one big event every quarter and two minor events”, they are learning how to operate more cost-efficiently.
According to Valenzuela, After Dark is under the Office of Student, and is funded by a ten-year lock in fee derived from student fees.
“We do our best to honor the fact that it’s student’s money so we try to use it the best we can. For an example, for this event, we thought that the food was too much money.” Says Valenzuela.