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Greeks prepare for competition

Greek organizations will don their racing apparel, put on their game faces and compete in a push cart race this Saturday, it’s Beta 500 time.

Open to any Greek organization on campus, Beta 500 has been running for 40 years. Money raised for the event benefits Ronald McDonald house.

Ryan Gamble, president of Beta Theta Pi, said they raised over $2,000 last year and set a goal to raise even more this year. At last year’s event, the men of Sigma Phi Epsilon and the women of Alpha Chi Omega won the trophies.

Beta 500 falls at the end of Greek Week. During the week, many competitions take place among fraternities and sororities. Such competitions are the Greek Olympics and a Survivor game. “It is a week where fraternities and sororities really get a chance to show their pride within their chapter,” Gamble said, “and what it means to be Greek.”

In the time leading up to the event, different chapters can be seen practicing in the parking lots and other campus areas.

Chapters work ahead of time to raise money. Reyna Spence, a sophomore member of Alpha Chi Omega, said they raised money at their chapter meetings. “We set out a milk jug for extra change,” Spence said.

The sororities and fraternities each set goals to raise the most money. The fraternity and sorority that succeeds in raising the most money are named Beta King and Queen or the year. Last year and for the past 37 years, Alpha Chi Omega has won Beta Queen.

“We like to raise the most money,” Spence said. In addition to raising money ahead of time, organizations must pay a $20 entry fee, which goes to the Ronald McDonald House. Beta 500 offers an opportunity for Greek chapters to come together as a community, Gamble said.

“My favorite thing about Beta 500 is just seeing all the chapters excited about being Greek,” Gamble said.

Others enjoy going to the race to experience the competitiveness and see all of the groups come together.

“I enjoy going to the race and seeing everyone’s shirts,” Spence said.

Every year, the different chapters design interesting shirts, Spence said.

Freshman Emily Mowry of Alpha Chi Omega also enjoys the competitiveness of the race.

“I’m looking forward to going and seeing what it’s about,” Mowry said. “You hope your team wins.”

Beta 500 takes place tomorrow at 12:30 p.m. in the parking lot next to Jerome Library.

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