Hobo Night Live to cap off Hobo Day


Collegian file photo

Comedy hypnotist “Lizzie the Dream Girl” hypnotises participating students at the 2019 Hobo Night Live.

Beth Nagel, Reporter

Hobo Night Live is back in full force this year with a schedule of events that includes a hypnotist and comedian.

The event begins at 7:30 p.m. Saturday in the Student Union and follows last year’s Hobo Night Live, which was significantly scaled back because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Hobo Night Live has been the traditional end to Hobo Day for the last nine years, where students can wrap up their homecoming experience with activities such as a dance, a game room, bingo, trivia and raffle prizes.

Brian Dominguez, the primary facilitator for Hobo Night Live, said the event is an opportunity for students to meet new people and make them feel more united with each other and the university.

Students and community members are welcome to attend the event, which is paid for by sponsorships.

“This is one of those college events you want to take advantage of,” Dominguez said. “In no time of your life will you be able to see a hypnotist followed by a comedian and a dance and hang out with your friends … and it’s all free.”

The hypnotist is Josh McVicar, a comedy showman and stage magician from St. Louis. The comedian is Jose Sarduy, an Air Force veteran with a Cuban background.

Attendees will find multiple games in the game room, including virtual reality games, Mario Kart, cards, board games and indoor lawn games.

Hobo Night Live started as an event to mitigate alcohol use after Hobo Day activities, Dominguez said. After a year that saw several students taken to the hospital because of excessive drinking, the event was created as an alternative activity for students who didn’t want to drink.

Now, Dominguez said, it still serves its original purpose but is also an event for students to connect with others and enjoy the entertainment.

Matt Gaub, a senior electrical engineering student, has attended the event since his freshman year and is one of the hosts this year.

“In my opinion, it’s by far the best thing you can do on Hobo Day for the night section,” Gaub said. “Even if you don’t have a lot of people you bring, you go there and you see entertainment. I tell everyone to go – it’s totally worth it.”

Dominguez said he is expecting anywhere from 1,000 to 1,500 people to attend.

“I don’t suspect it will be small. Sophomores are really looking to be part of tradition with freshmen,” Dominguez said.

There is usually more people than there is space, Gaub said.

Allison Gross, a sophomore pharmacy major, will attend Hobo Night Live for the first time this year. She said she is most excited for the hypnotist and game room.

While Hobo Night Live wasn’t canceled last year, only a limited number of students could attend, and the number of events were limited. This year, two classes will get to experience the full Hobo Night Live for the first time.

“It’s bittersweet to think about how we, in a way, lost our freshman year, but it’s also really fun to get to experience everything in person again, such as classes and an exciting Hobo Week with lots of events and activities going on,” Gross said.

“Whether there is a fantastic or not-so-fantastic game, it’s a great, fun event that ends Hobo Day on a high for a lot of students,” Dominguez said.