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4:30am Wake Up Calls, Chasing Boys, and Sisterly Bonding – It must be Derby Days!

Posted by on Thursday, March 24, 2011 in College Life, Dining, Freshman Life, General Information, Greek Life, Student Life, Traditions.

Every year on Vanderbilt’s campus there is a week where sleep becomes non-existent for sorority girls from the hours of 4:30am on, it is not unusual to see a girl pop out of a bush next to you when you are walking down Alumni Lawn to class, and all that loud music, yeah, it’s coming from Sigma Chi field games. This is a phenomenon that we at Vanderbilt call Sigma Chi Derby Days. During the spring the Sigma Chi Fraternity hosts a week long competition between all of the sorority houses. Not only does it provide lots of entertainment and competition for the girls and brothers of Sigma Chi, but it also benefits the Children’s Miracle Network and the Monroe Carrel Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. There are many events and happenings throughout the week, but I will highlight some of my favorites below.

The main competition of the week – and the reason for 4:30am wake up calls – is the search for Derby hats. Every morning at 5:30am a clue is emailed out to all of houses leading them to a blue Derby hat hidden someone on campus. These blue derbies each have a clue on them also, which when put together will lead them to the Black Derby Hat – the main prize! — And source of 1,500 points!

There is also a banner competition that is judged on Enthusiasm/Participation, Creativity/Originality, and the Aesthetics of the Banner, a cook-out, a dance competition, Penny Wars (a great way to raise money), and field games. All of the houses are awarded a certain number of points for participating in or winning all of these events and in the end only one house is declared the winners at midnight on Saturday during a huge party at the Sigma Chi house, usually complete with an awesome band! This year – Three 6 Mafia!

Sidenote: As I was walking into the Buttrick to complete this post I witnessed one of my fellow sorority sisters chasing down a freshman Sigma Chi sporting a yellow derby hat right in front of the main dining hall. And duh, of course she caught him! 150 points for Tri Delt!

So even though all of the houses are competing against each other, this week is a great way for our entire house to come together to work together to win Derby Days. I may go Derby hunting with girls two years younger than me who I haven’t hung out with before or sit in Rand and scheme about how we are going to win Penny Wars with my Tri Delta family while munching on a RandWich. Either way I am bonding with my sisters and participating in a cause that is greater than myself, “It’s for the kids!”

Overall I am always really excited about Derby Days and all of the events and excitement that is associated with helping such a great cause in such a fun way! I can’t wait for Saturday night when the winner is announced and hopefully Tri Delta will hang on to our victory from last year!

Good luck to all the houses!

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