President and Sister Reese host date night to take pressure off dating

President and Sister Reese share stories from their dating experience. They mingled with BYU students throughout the night. (Chloe Peterson)

President C. Shane Reese and Sister Wendy Reese invited BYU students to join them in a campus-wide date night on Wednesday, Jan. 31. 

“This is the biggest group date I have ever been on,” Sister Reese said.

The night began in the WSC Ballroom where President Reese shared three main goals for the event.

“I hope that the number one thing that you learn tonight is that there doesn’t have to be so much pressure associated with dating,” President Reese said. 

Secondly, he hoped students would learn how to develop healthy relationships with each other and, lastly, he hoped they would see dating is meant to be fun. 

President and Sister Reese then led a Kahoot trivia game with questions about their own dating experience. They shared stories of their first date to the Manti pageant and other details about their courtship. 

“That first night as we drove down to the Manti Pageant, I could feel her goodness and I loved that about her from the moment that I met her,” President Reese said about his wife Wendy. 

Following the Kahoot, the event scattered across campus. Activities included karaoke, swing dancing, board games, bowling, a planetarium show, s’mores, a service activity and a free dinner from J. Dawgs. 

Students swing dance in the WSC Ballroom. Dance instruction was provided. (Chloe Peterson)

“We’re trying really hard to show a lot of inexpensive and meaningful opportunities,” Casey Peterson, associate dean of students on BYU campus, said.

The motivation behind this event was to encourage students to get out more and meet face-to-face, Peterson said. Similar events have been or will be taking place at other Church Educational System campuses, he said.

Student volunteers from the BYUSA helped run the event. Some taught line dances in the ballroom while others ran photo booths or handed out s’mores. 

Many students brought a date with them, while some came alone or with friends. Several young families were also in attendance. 

Kaylee Jepsen graduated from BYU in 2022. Her husband is currently studying mechanical engineering and she said that having a 10-month-old baby, she and her husband haven’t been on an official date in a while. Jepsen said this event was an opportunity for them to get out and have fun together.

“I think a lot of people who haven’t been going on dates went on a date tonight,” Thomas Rex, a BYU sophomore studying public relations, said.

President and Sister Reese stayed in the WSC Ballroom chatting with students and mingling throughout the night.

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