Blue, pink, red and yellow filled the sky for 10 full minutes, and the temperature on the ground dropped about 20 degrees. Students on two teams yelled and laughed as they were pelted with water from seemingly everywhere. And there was a guy with a guitar singing a song.
Last year, students at BYU held the official world record for the largest water balloon fight for about one month until the University of Kentucky Christian Student Fellowship took it back in August. Many BYU students are anxious for an opportunity to reclaim the title.
But, unfortunately, this year the water balloons will stay empty, since the event was canceled.
Norm Finlinson, executive director for Student Academic and Advisement Services (SAAS), said attempts were made to have a water balloon fight this year, but it was impossible to get everything together.
“We had fully intended to do it this year, but things didn’t work out,” Finlinson said.
Originally the goal was to have a fun activity for students during spring and summer when enrollment is not as high. When BYU students heard about the possibility of breaking a world record they were excited, Finlinson said.
“There is not a lot going on spring/summer, so we wanted to do something, particularly during summer,” he said.
This year, SAAS wanted the engineering department on campus to have students create various machines which would fill up the balloons. Last year volunteers spent weeks filling more than 120,000 balloons.
Most students who participated enjoyed last year’s event. Harriet Jenson, a senior from Yarm, England, said she and some of her friends had a great time.
“The most fun part was when it got going, and all the balloons were flying,” Jenson said.
Being a part of breaking a world record was a highlight for some BYU students. Ali Bird, a senior studying math education, said beyond the free shirts and food, it was great.
“Being a part of the world record was really fun,” Bird said.
Students are hoping the water balloon fight will happen in the near future, partly because of the positive experiences they had in the past. Mark Tonkinson, an English teaching major, said he especially enjoyed last year’s event.
“I thought it was well organized and a lot of fun,” Tonkinson said.
Many who signed up for this year’s water balloon fight were disappointed after they signed up and then received an email saying it was canceled. However, SAAS said it is sure there will be a similar event next year, and the friendly rivalry with the UK Christian Student Fellowship will continue.
“We would like to do something to get the student community together every year,” Finlinson said.
For students, that means stay tuned, because the chance to break a world record doesn’t happen every day.