On Monday, April 3, APU held its first ever King & Queen of the Zu pageant at the Felix Event Center. Six contestants were selected from the APU student body to compete in games to raise funds for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. The event was hosted by the Student Athlete Advisory Board (SAAB).
The event began with an introduction of all six contestants which was followed by a group dance routine performance. Afterwards, a friendly game of Word Sneak (as seen on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon) tested the contestants’ ability to think on their feet to a public audience.
Next was the talent portion which included singing, acting and stand up comedy. The contestants took the approach of making the audience laugh rather then showboating any serious talents they may of had.
The event ended with a “get-to-know-you” portion where the contestants answered various questions about themselves which were pulled out from a hat.
The Zu’s King & Queen were chosen by a majority vote crowning Junior Psychology major Brensten Lindsey as king and Senior Acting major Kristina Meyering as queen.
Lindsey, who is a recent transfer student, heard about the event from his football coach and signed up immediately.
“It’s such a high honor. I’m just getting here so it was fun to be crowned King of the Zu, especially for such a great cause,” Lindsey said.
Meyering expressed a similar grateful sentiment.
“I’m just really excited. I’ve always wanted to participate in something like this, so I’m glad they opened up for women to participate,” Meyering said.
The event faced controversy upon its initial introduction to campus. Originally, the event titled King of the Zu sought only to crown a male winner. However, after several female students expressed a desire to participate in the event as well and petitioned to join in on the festivities, the SAAB respectfully took it into consideration and re-designed the event to make it more inclusive.
“I think that was pretty cool, because I think girls are just as exciting as guys and deserve a chance to do things like this,” Meyering said. “I had originally applied when it was just for guys too.”
Although there were fun and games along with a newly crowned king and queen of APU, the purpose of the event was to raise funds to go towards Make-A-Wish Foundation.
“All proceeds from our ticketing to the voting is all going straight to Make-A-Wish,” SAAB member and a sophomore sports journalism major, Kara Hinton said.
Many colleges in the PacWest Conference hold similar events to King & Queen of the Zu. SAAB reached out to several of the universities to form ideas in order to plan APU’s own fundraising event.
Though it is a lesser known entity on campus, SAAB wishes for the APU body to support these events which help raise funds for many noteworthy causes.
“We’re trying to make sure that whatever we’re doing is supporting the student body and taking that support out and reaching it out to others,” Hinton said.
SAAB plans to do more events to raise funds, so we may be seeing more Zu kings and queens crowned in the future.