Whether you’re just a casual enthusiast or die-hard team player, Pokémon Go is the newest up and coming craze on the JMU campus. Teams Mystic, Instinct and Valor are taking over gyms, hitting up Poké-Stops and walking to hatch those eggs up and down campus. UPB even joined the fun this past weekend by hosting the event Pokémon Go Dukes.
Centered on the Festival Lawn, Pokémon Go Dukes featured activities like bubble soccer, team t-shirt crafting, and games like “Who’s That Pokémon?”. All of the fun events were tied together with tasty treats to keep the trainers who attended the event as well fueled as their newest Pokémon editions.
“We played the bubble soccer and it was really fun!”, said Catherine Quill, a health science major, and senior at JMU. Quill doesn’t have the popular Pokémon Go app, but she said she enjoyed the UPB event without trying to level up her trainer status.
For passersby like freshman health science major, Danielle Smith and her friend Meredith Palmer, who is a freshman biology major visiting from UVA, Pokémon Go Dukes was just a fun happenstance!
“We were eating at Festival and saw that there were crafts to make and had to stop by. We can’t wait to play bubble soccer next!” said Smith.
“I saw the crafts and even with my negative art skills, I wanted to make something cool.” said visiting UVA student Palmer.
Both girls were making bandanas to match their school spirit instead of Poké-team spirit, but Pokémon Go and the UPB event was all about getting outside and to meet new friends, regardless of how high your trainer levels are. So using the puffy paint, mini-spray paints, and various colored bandanas and t-shirts, a sea of crafters and Pokémon fans alike became bedecked in homemade team swag.
Walking through campus we tend to see a field of people looking down at their phones. And to those of us looking up, we feel closed off from our fellow JMU students and faculty. But down on those screens are connections that we can’t see just by looking at the top of our peers’ heads. There are team loyalties being built one gym at a time, a text from mom or dad, or friends making plans for the weekend. Sometimes those screens might even have canvas reminders about homework we forget to do every once and awhile. So red, yellow, or blue, Pokémon Trainers and Go enthusiasts are getting out and celebrating catching Pikachu and new friends!