RHA spreads Christmas spirit through event

Madison Hinkle, president of the Residence Hall Association and co lead of this year’s Holiday Extravaganza, presents the SFA Charter School choir. They sang a few traditional Christmas songs like “Jingle Bells” and “The Christmas Song.”

The SFA Residence Hall Association held the 2018 Holiday Extravaganza on Tuesday from 5 to 8 p.m. in the Baker Pattillo Student Center Plaza.

The Holiday Extravaganza is an annual event that takes place near the beginning of the holiday season. It’s mainly coordinated by the RHA, but it includes participation from several student and community groups, as well.

According to Madison Hinkle, the president of RHA and co-lead of this year’s Holiday Extravaganza, Hall Council representatives from each residence hall and student organizations participate in the Holiday Extravaganza by setting up tables with holiday-themed activities.

The event also includes various performances, the annual tree lighting ceremony and a special appearance from Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus, where kids have an opportunity to meet them.

“When planning this event, we strive to plan and execute a spirit-filled night for everyone involved,” Hinkle said. “We also strive to create a stronger community within Residence Life. We are blessed with wonderful support from our advisers, hall directors and hall councils.”

The event is open to SFA students, faculty and community members. Various people from the community are welcome to participate and help out if they wish.

Cullen Dyer, the national communication coordinator of the RHA as well as the lead of this year’s Holiday Extravaganza, said people and groups from all over the Nacogdoches community are welcome to perform or set up a table at the event.

“At each table, there is a different activity that is holiday-themed for everyone to enjoy,”

Dyer said. “We even let people from the community come out and participate with a tabling event. We also have performances from people on campus and around the community for everyone to enjoy.”

According to Elizabeth Roshell, programming coordinator for residence life and adviser of the RHA, the event was created as a way for both the SFA and Nacogdoches community to come together, enjoy performances and participate in activities. She said the planning process of the event is always exciting to go through because of all the community interaction it involves.

Roshell said community involvement in the event has grown over the years, as well as studentinvolvement.

“I believe it is important for students to participate because it is a time to volunteer and showcase to the Nacogdoches community all the great things that SFASU students have to offer,” Roshell said.

Another aspect of this event that makes it important is the time of year it takes place. Dyer said it’s especially exciting to see families and friends from the Nacogdoches community come together and interact with one another during the holidays.

“It’s the holiday season, a time where family and friends are supposed to bond the most,” Dyer said. “I feel it’s important for everyone to participate because, like I said before, it’s a time you get to spend the most of with your family.”

The Holiday Extravaganza is also very important for those involved with the RHA. Hinkle said it’s one of the organization’s staple events, and everyone in the RHA works hard every holiday season to make sure it goes according to plan.

The event also promotes participation from students, staff and members of the community, something heavily encouraged by the organization. “It is important to continue the tradition of this event because it is a wonderful start to the holiday season,” Hinkle said. “The event is filled with holiday spirit and love from the RHA. I am so blessed to be the face of an organization with such a substantial impact on the Nacogdoches community.”

This year’s Holiday Extravaganza included performances from the SFA Charter School Choir, Kayla Pearson and Chloe Stroud and the SFA Pep Band. In the future, Hinkle said she would like to see a wider variety of performances and attract even more people. She said she would also like to get more student organizations involved with hosting tables.

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