So this weekend, because I wasn’t at NYLA like many of my peers, I volunteered to help with the library lock-in on campus. What did I know about the event before volunteering? That it was held in the library, supposed to be fun, and went into the wee hours of the morning.
Well, all of those expectations turned out to be true! Undergraduate students signed up in teams of two to participate. Part of the event was a type of scavenger hunt where they were required to find answers to questions using *only* library resources – print or online. The other part involved playing skill games. I had the pleasure of running a game called “A Bit Dicey”. The student had 60 seconds to hold a popsicle stick in their mouth and stack six dice, vertically, on the popsicle stick. If they could keep them standing for at least 3 seconds, they got a sticker and “won” that game. I probably had one of the easiest games, judging by how many stickers I handed out (and for the record, I tested and did mange to do it myself). There were a variety of strategies employed… but on the whole, entertaining.
In between the two sessions of answer-finding and game-playing, we had breaks for food, caffeine (read: diet Coke, noms), sugar (read: Reese’s), and more games. The video game company that produces Just Dance 3 had brought equipment to set that up, and students played that during break. They had raffle tickets and students were winning a number of different prizes that had been donated to the event.
The event went from about 9:30 til after 1 AM. We stuck around and cleaned up the chaos that was the first floor of Bird Library. We, the volunteers, managed to snag a few of the extra swag bags. And then we ventured out into the incredibly chilly evening – well, it was morning – and left the library locked behind us.
I’m glad I ended up volunteering. I had my qualms (see also: chaotically caffeinated undergrads) and I did have to deal with someone who wanted to steal my dice (I got them back though! Nothing like straight-up asking “hey, did you steal one of my dice?”) but I also got to work with some of my fellow library students and some of the library staff at Bird. And most importantly, we took the whole idea that the library is a quiet space full of individuals and flipped it on its head, if only for a night.