Arts & Events

KUPS celebrates 45 years

This week 90.1 KUPS The Sound celebrated its 45th anniversary on the airwaves by hosting a number of entertaining and engaging events both on and off campus.
On air since the fall of 1968, KUPS has been and remains a strong fixture of campus life, at the same time maintaining a strong and welcome connection with members of the greater Puget Sound area. I sat down with general manager Kim Clancy and marketing director Rafi Ronquillo to discuss the events of this past week and to get a better understanding of the importance of the Pledge Drive at the heart of it all.
The events largely revolved around an effort of KUPS’s staff to reinforce the mutually beneficial relationship between the station, campus and the larger community.
Ronquilo spoke to that relationship, explaining to me that, “It’s impressive what we do with the budget we have. That’s not to say its insufficient, but when we reach out to the community, we open ourselves up and we ask people to reciprocate our passion, to help support us so we can continue to support them”.
It’s clear from the attitudes of those working at the station was excited for the events lined up, events that would help solidify the station’s stellar reputation while simultaneously raising funds to  ensure future years of success.
Events kicked off Monday with an old throwback event from the days of KUPS past, a Boom Box March. DJ’s and station staff marched around campus playing music, an event Clancy informed me, was an old KUPS tradition that the station was excited to be bringing back.
Tuesday night played host to a Ubiquitous They con-sponsored screening of the cult classic heavy metal film, “Spinal Tap” and improve performance at 7pm in Rausch auditorium.
Both parties were excited to have the opportunity to throw a cross-promotional event, and Clancy expressed interest in a continued desire to see KUPS work with other campus and off-campus organizations to host more events in the coming years.
The station’s main goal this past week was to “build interest and open things up. This week is a way to open up the station, to get students involved and hopefully get people excited for the next 45 years”.
Clancy’s desire to open things up, speaks to  a desire of the station to continue to foster a growing relationship with students on campus and also within the greater Tacoma community that comprises a large portion of its listener base.
Wednesday night for example, the station played host to a live in-studio performance at 10pm in Club Rendezvous from local and active Northwest Hip-Hop artist Rockwell Powers, who just released an album this past October.
The next night at 8pm, Club Rendevouz set the stage for the Tacoma Music Showcase, a performance by some of the local bands represented by Tacoma’s own Swoon Records.
Downtown at The Grand at the same time, the documentary “Our Vinyl Weighs a Ton” screened for audiences, the grand calling it, “a feature-length documentary about avant-garde Los Angeles-based record label Stones Throw Records.” Immediately following the screening, the theater hosted a reception featuring local musicians, artists and designers.
While each day found new and exciting events for students and members of the community, a week long Pledge Drive and Sasquatch ticket contest sat at the heart of the festivities. All week students were encouraged to submit photos of themselves with some sort of Sasquatch theme to the station’s Facebook page. At the end of the week, the photo with the most likes would win the submitter a pair of tickets to this year’s Sasquatch Music Festival.
In addition to the contest, the station put on this week’s events in an effort to call attention to the Pledge Drive they are running.
Clancy said that the reason for the pledge drive was one that would be mutually beneficial for students across campus, as the funds would help not only improve KUPS but other organizations as well.
She said, “We’re really trying to raise money for more software, software that will assist us in putting on more in-studio live performances. It will also double as equipment to help us broadcast other campus events, like athletic events or other things that happen down in Rendevouz. We’re really excited to try and use the space more.”
More information about the week’s events can be found on the station’s Facebook page, and donations to improve and expand the station are still being accepted.
Those interested in donating to the station can mail a check of ANY amount made out to KUPS 90.1FM The Sound to:
University of Puget Sound
1500 N Warner # 1067
Tacoma, WA 98416 – 1067