Black Squirrel Festival Features Live Music, Food and Freebies

Kent State tradition brings together students, faculty/staff and the Kent community.

A Kent State tradition for 33 years, the annual Black Squirrel Festival will take place Friday, Sept. 5, from 12-6 p.m. on the Student Green and Risman Plaza. The Black Squirrel Festival, which is hosted by Kent Student Center Programming (KSCP), attracts more than 3,000 students, faculty and staff, as well as members of the Kent community. The event includes live music, inflatables, rock climbing wall, photo booth, food, local vendors, student organizations and thousands of giveaway items.

The first 2000 people to event will receive a Black Squirrel Festival t-shirt. Other official event freebies include sunglasses, mason jar mugs and chapstick.

“This is the event of the year in terms of free stuff,” said senior public communications major, Alyssa Mazey. “My friends and I will for sure be out there again this year.”

The Kent State food truck, Fork in the Road, will be on site from 12-3 p.m. serving up some festival favorites. Dining plans are valid at the food truck. Local bands and DJs will perform throughout the event, each playing an hour set. Festival goers will enjoy musical genres ranging from rap to folk and some jazzy-blues in between.

12-1 p.m.: Beach Boyz Entertainment
1-2 p.m.: Ace 500
2-3 p.m.: The Gage Brothers
3-4 p.m.: The Trunks
4-5 p.m.: Mount Ratz
5-6 p.m.: The Ohio Weather Band

The Black Squirrel Festival also offers students a chance to learn about student organizations, explore different university departments and learn more about the Kent community. Local vendors will have everything from coupons to clothing, jewelry and of course more free stuff. Many of the 300+ student organizations will be set up at the event to recruit new members and encourage students to get involved.

Lindsay Wheeler, assistant manager for Kent Student Center Programming, said the Black Squirrel Festival is an excellent opportunity for students to revisit with student organizations, or catch up with some that they didn’t have a chance to talk with during the back to school Blastoff event.

 “Blastoff was only two hours,” Wheeler said. “Black Squirrel Festival is all day and gives students the opportunity to visit more of the tables.”

Kent Student Center Programming’s popular late night movie program, Real Late Reels, will be showing Disney’s “Maleficent” at 9 p.m. The movie will be projected drive-in-movie-style on the Student Green. Watch the trailer here.

If it rains during the day, the festival will move indoors to the ballroom on the second floor of the Kent Student Center, and the movie will still be shown at 9 p.m., but it will be in the Kiva.

POSTED: Wednesday, November 19, 2014 03:34 PM
Updated: Thursday, December 8, 2022 08:40 AM
The Center for Student Involvement