Seniors played Beirut with pingpong balls, root beer kegs, and nearly 800 servings of calzones as part of a Class of 2006 event on the Engineering Quad yesterday.
“It’s pretty much as close as anyone’s going to get to having a kegger on the quad,” said Miriam Gross ’06. Gross is vice president of publicity for the Class of 2006 Council, which sponsored the event.
“After the career fair [this week], we all needed to have a little fun,” Gross said.
During the event, which was held from 4-6 p.m., seniors ate calzones and played what Gross called “Beiroot Beer” with root beer from kegs. According to Gross, “Beiroot Beer is a modified game of … Beirut, which is a traditional Cornell game of throwing pingpong balls into cups filled with … beer.” If a player successfully shoots a pingpong ball into an opponent’s cup, his opponent must drink the cup’s contents.
The class council gave away pingpong balls bearing the Class of 2006 logo, which organizers said they believed to be a big draw.
“People need as many pingpong balls as possible because they get lost off of porches and things like that,” Gross said.
“As far as I know no class has ever given out pingpong balls, and we even got them approved,” said class council president Michael Zuckerman ’06.
The event was directed at seniors making their way from Hotel Administration 430: Introduction to Wines to homes in Collegetown.
“Wines is the class the seniors take together, so it’s a great chance for all seniors to hang out,” said Jason Levine ’06, who attended the event. Class council members handed out quarter cards outside Statler Hall as class let out, and many students used their small black wine glass kits as calzone tables as they picnicked on the Quad.
Zuckerman said that class council members considered other ideas such as a senior field day before settling on root beer, Beirut, and calzones.
“We thought this [would be] a pretty provocative event,” he said.
“Seniors like things that have to do with alcohol,” said Lindsay Ulrey ’06, class council vice president of events.
According to Zuckerman, the official name of the kick-off event was, “Seniors Go Balls Out: Grab Senior Year By the Balls.”
As last year’s vice president of the Cornell Political Coalition, Zuckerman helped organize a mock election on campus to coincide with the national presidential race.
“This is a far cry from running a mock election,” Zuckerman said. “But it’s a different type of event. Instead of promoting civic engagement, we’re promoting class unity.”
“It’s an opportunity for seniors to get together, eat some calzones, and play some root beer pong, I mean Beirut. I guess people have different names for it,” Zuckerman said, “but the official name is Beiroot Beer.”
The class council served seniors 450 miniature calzones and 50 full-size calzones cut into thirds. Krystyn Tendy ’06, an at-large member of the class council, estimated that 800 people had been served. The class council also provided four quarter kegs, containing the equivalent of 300 plastic cups of root beer, and eight card tables for playing Beirut.
Sam Firke ’06 and Dan Bonner ’06 played a round on the Quad. Bonner sunk a shot in one of Firke’s cups.
“Can you put in the paper that [Firke] got owned on the bounce?” Bonner asked. His luck didn’t hold. “This is devastating,” Bonner said. I can’t believe I’m losing in front of a reporter.” “Could you try to make this one?” Firke asked Bonner. “I’m thirsty.”
As the game came to a close, Firke shot a Class of 2006 pingpong ball into Bonner’s last cup of root beer, which Bonner downed. Firke also had one cup left. If Bonner made the next shot, they agreed, they would play another game to determine a winner.
“The last thing I want at this point is overtime,” Bonner said. “I never want to see root beer again.” Firke and Bonner said they had been working on a lab report together and decided to come down to the Engineering Quad for a break.
“I’m on short sleep, so I feel that this is helping my academic performance instead of hindering it,” Bonner said. “I need to load up on caffeine, or actually sugar.”
Archived article by David Wittenberg