All kinds of love were in the air Thursday afternoon when the Slippery Rock University Program Board (UPB) celebrated Valentine’s Day in the Smith Student Center Ballroom. From a chocolate dipping fountain to a therapy dog kissing booth, everyone was welcome to celebrate the holiday with their friends and peers.
The usual UPB staples were present, of course, like the chocolate dipping fountain, the photo booth and the stuff-a-plush animals, but this year’s Valentine’s event featured new elements like a caricature artist and a therapy dog kissing booth sponsored by Phi Alpha, the social work honor society. In addition to Phi Alpha, UPB also collaborated with the Women’s Center, the Pride Center, HOPE and Active Minds to introduce new ideas about Valentine’s Day.
“We want people to write something they love about themselves, about people that they love, about something that they do, just so they can recognize that and know that Valentine’s Day can be more than just about a significant other,” said Cassidy Leasure, senior sociology major and Women’s Center employee. “It can be about yourself and your friends and stuff, too.”
Director of university events for UPB Paxton Fetterman said she was excited to work with other campus organizations during this event, as well as the committee members and staff members.
“Having people that are, like, behind me with this, it really helps and makes things enjoyable,” Fetterman said.
A sophomore biology major, Fetterman said she isn’t really ‘into’ Valentine’s Day, but UPB’s annual event always gets her in the mood to celebrate. She hopes the students who attended also enjoyed the holiday, whether it meant spending time with friends or significant others, meeting new people, or going home with something to remember their year.
Students certainly had something to remember if they went home with a stuff-a-plush or a speed sketch from caricature artist Adam Pate, or if they got kisses from one of the two therapy dogs at the kissing booth.
Therapy dog handler Ardis Walsh said she feels students should always get to spend time with dogs, especially when they need to relieve stress or just feel some love.
“Wherever you are, wherever there are people, there is nothing like unconditional puppy love,” Walsh said. “It doesn’t matter how young or how old you are, a dog just always brings a smile to your face.”
UPB holds numerous events like this one each semester, so keep up with the organization on social media @SRUPB.