Date night for more than just couples
Hagan Center Hall was transformed into a dimly lit authentic restaurant for Peer Ministry Date Night, which occurred on November 3. There were eight long tables positioned into rows of four in the large hall with candles and floral centerpieces to provide a romantic ambience to the setting. Students attended with their real dates and even friend-dates, enjoying catering from the Boynton while listening to soft music and conversing with one another. Whether single or taken, Peer Ministry was open to any amount of people dining in their establishment. Each group signed up for a specific time slot, reserving themselves a table as if they were in a real restaurant.
Peer Ministry has been running date night for three years now. Before hosting this event at Hagan Center, they used to escort students to actual restaurants so that they would be on dates by themselves, focusing more on matchmaking. They recently decided that it would be more favorable as an on-campus event. “We figured it would be a better idea if we could have more hands-on direct service with people participating in it and get to know them better, showing them that we’re peer ministers and we’re here to serve them. Not only in food, but in Christ,” mentioned Tim Cody, a sophomore peer minister who served as a waiter at the event.
Sophomores Tom Angell and Ashley Gioioso are Co-Coordinators of Peer Ministry and organized the event this year. Peer Ministry’s goal by hosting Date Night is to emphasize the idea of dating to newer generations. Gioioso explained, “Peer Ministry started hosting this event to try to end the hook-up culture. We want to teach them to bring a date out to a restaurant, make small talk, and interact with one another in person.”
This year, 145 people attended date night, rendering it a record-breaking success for Peer Ministry and guaranteeing that there will be more date nights in the future. Bianca McAfee, a junior who attended date night with her boyfriend, enjoyed the atmosphere that the event brought. “It was an amazing event where we were able to have amazing food, great service, and a safe way to meet new people.”
The members of Peer Ministry hope that date night not only educates people, but also brings attention to their cause. Alicia Burrows, a sophomore, aided as a hostess at date night, organizing reservations and leading people to their correct tables. “Serving others at Date Night helps us get our name out to the Assumption community so that people know who we are and what we do. It helps us connect with others and serve them in a way that it’s fun.” “Serve” is a term that has reflected Peer Ministry’s mission, making sure students understand what exactly it means to them through this event and many others.
Lauren Fitzgerald, a junior, studies English. She is a copy editor for Le Provocateur.