Hot dog caper brings the circus to CPP

By Melissa Lopez

With stilt walkers towering over the crowds, carnival games creating friendly competition and hot dogs filling appetites, Cal Poly Pomona Foundation held its annual Hot Dog Caper last Thursday in University Park.

The foundation held the event to celebrate the start of a new academic school year.

Those in attendance included students, alumni and faculty all a part of the CPP community.

An estimated 7,000 people were expected at the event, due to the marketing and extensive promotion around campus.

According to Arielle Torrez, the marketing assistant and writer for the foundation, everyone was excited for the event because of all the preparations.

“We began actively planning and hiring vendors in July, making sure that everything was organized,” said Torrez. “We’re really happy with how it turned out because we did spend such a long time on it.”

Lines were forming long before the event officially started.

Organizers, alongside Billy Bronco, counted down from five and then began handing out thousands of hot dogs.

After attendees received their two hot dogs and a bag of chips, they began to make their way to different stations.

The condiments, beverage and popsicle stations were all strategically placed across the main hot dog lines.

“I missed the Hot Dog Caper last year, and it looked super insane, so I wasn’t going to miss it this year,” said John Smith, a fourth-year biotechnology student.

Attendees were also encouraged to sample new Mountain Dew beverages, craft sodas from Innovation Brew Works and taste Dippin’ Dots at the Poly Trolley.

While eating their hot dogs, many students chose to sit and enjoy some live music by alumnus Branden Herron (’14, music) and his band Beer Brass who performed jazzy tunes that kept the audience upbeat.

Those in attendance were also able relive their childhood dreams during the carnival themed event.

An acrobatic duo mesmerized many and caused jaws to drop with their performance, as they effortlessly balanced on one another.

Balloon artists made balloon animals and crowns, in what seemed like seconds.

Face painters got creative and painted colorful faces on students who were then able to show off their designs across campus.

Thrill seekers climbed and then quickly slid down a massive inflatable slide.

Two photo booths equipped with various props were present to capture silly faces and memories from the fun-filled event.

Attendees were also quick to track down Billy Bronco, the mimes and the stilt walkers for a quick photo opportunity.

Residence Life Area Coordinator Hollie Butcher started working at CPP three months ago and attended the Hot Dog Caper as the first event that interested her.

“I’m obviously really excited to be here because of the free food, but also because I’m still trying to learn about Cal Poly, so all of these activities are great,” said Butcher. “As a staff member, I’ve worked at different higher education institutions, and I think that, for students especially, it is really important to take advantage of events like these in order for them to get integrated into the campus community.”

Butcher who works specifically with first year students knows that they are looking to build connections on campus and encourages them to attend events like this one where they can meet and interact with other people outside of their dorms.

“I think this is the best event of the whole year,” said Derek Chau, a fourth-year computer information systems student. “With this being my second year here, I definitely feel the Cal Poly spirit today the most.”

This year’s Hot Dog Caper would have not been successful without the foundation’s numerous partnerships.

“As far as foundation goes, we partner with Cal Poly Pomona and Bronco Athletics,” said Torrez. “We also have a really close relationship with ASI and Facilities Planning & Management, as well as our sponsors like Pepsi, First Class Vending and Hoffy, who actually donates a majority of the hotdogs.”

The Hot Dog Caper, this year, not only filled people’s stomachs, but it also encouraged interactions and connections for the year ahead.

Hot Dog caper is held to celebrate the start of the new academic school year

Taylor Story / The Poly Post

Hot Dog caper is held to celebrate the start of the new academic school year

Hot Dog caper is held to celebrate the start of the new academic school year

Taylor Story / The Poly Post

Hot Dog caper is held to celebrate the start of the new academic school year

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