Rice University’s Student Newspaper — Since 1916

Sunday, April 14, 2024 — Houston, TX

Martel Texas Party marks first public of the year


Courtesy Sydney Kim

Students dance at the Martel Texas Party public.

By Nayeli Shad     8/29/23 11:39pm

The first public of the year, Martel College’s “Don’t Mess With Texas” party, took place Aug. 26. The capacity for the public was 1,200 people, with 350 allowed on the sundeck. The sundeck line closed at 10:15 p.m. — 15 minutes after the public started — due to capacity restrictions, Martel socials committee head Audrey Pizzolato said.

Pizzolato said the Martel socials committee wanted to introduce new students to publics by maintaining traditions while also adding new elements. This year’s public included a beer garden, which Pizzolato said was added to make the quad more enjoyable since the majority of attendees would not be on the sundeck.

“We felt like in previous years when people didn’t get on to the sundeck, they were upset because they saw people on the sundeck and wanted to be there with them,” Pizzolato, a junior, said. “We thought that the beer garden would be more of a chill space for upperclassmen to go and hang out and just draw more attention [to] and [add] fun things to do in the quad.”

Pizzolato said that during the public at around 10:45 p.m., the DJ had to temporarily stop the music and ask students in the quad to step back from the sundeck at the request of RUPD.

“I think there was definitely a little bit of crowdedness in the quad because people wanted to be physically closer to the sundeck,” Pizzolato said.

Brown College senior Ian Carroll said he arrived at Martel around 9:30 p.m. to be able to get on the sundeck and was up there for most of his time at the public. He said that he enjoyed the view and the music while on the sundeck, and he also liked the less crowded beer garden.

“[The beer garden] was far enough from the speakers that I could relax and have more of a conversation with my friends since we could hear each other better,” Carroll said.

Will Rice College freshman Emmie Casey arrived around 9:40 p.m. and said that the line was busy but she was able to easily get onto the sundeck. Casey said she saw many familiar freshmen and liked the music and theme of the public but noticed the sundeck was sparse.

“It was busy, but … there was like a third of [the sundeck where] there was no one,” Casey said. “If you stepped away from the crowd, there was no one there.”

Like last year, the public was ticketed, with tickets costing $1 for Martelians and $3 for everyone else. The socials heads mistakenly emailed both students who were selected for tickets this year and last year, which Pizzolato said was quickly resolved so the correct people got tickets.

Emma Korsmo, a Lovett College senior, was unable to get onto the sundeck but said she wouldn’t have enjoyed it because of the crowds. She said her experience was mediocre and she wished there was no ticketing.

“It’s just so hot and there is such a long line. If you want to get on [the] sundeck, you have to get in line so early,” Korsmo said.

Pizzolato said Martel socials are working on ways to eliminate the cost of tickets in the future, but she isn’t sure if ticketing will go away entirely.

“I’m not sure if it’s going to be realistic that social heads will veer away from [ticketing], even if they wanted to, just because it seems like it’s been helping with keeping parties less rowdy and [having] less issues,” Pizzolato said.

More from The Rice Thresher

NEWS 4/10/24 12:05am
To bike or not to bike? Beer Bike 2024 sees tents, possible wind

This year’s Beer Bike took place Saturday, April 6. After a seven-minute delay, the alumni races began, followed by the women’s and then the men’s. For the second year in a row, each of the races were divided into two heats. As usual, the times from both heats will be compared, along with calculated penalties, by the Rice Program Council to determine final results. Results are not available at time of publication, and the campus-wide Beer Bike coordinators did not provide a timeline for when they will be.


Please note All comments are eligible for publication by The Rice Thresher.