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Volleyball game raises money for charity

| Monday, May 1, 2017

Braving wind and freezing rain, students made the long trek to White Field on Sunday morning, only to jump in the mud for a game of volleyball to raise money for charity. The annual Keenan Hall Muddy Sunday began at 11 a.m. and saw roughly 400 people playing volleyball in ankle-deep mud throughout the day.

Junior Jack Higham said he organized the event alongside fellow Keenan residents Henry Mulholland and Mark O’Meara.

“Muddy Sunday is a charity event for Habitat for Humanity, first and foremost,” Higham said. “We do that through a mud volleyball event. It used to be a tournament. Now it’s just for fun. We make the field really muddy and put up volleyball nets, and people will come out and play a team. It’s really fun, and you feel good about yourself at the end of the day, because it’s for charity.”

Higham said the event charges $10 per person and sells T-shirts and tank tops to raise money for Habitat for Humanity.

“All the expenses come from Keenan Hall’s funds, and any money we make is sent directly to Habitat for Humanity,” he said.

Before the event, Higham said there was a chance Muddy Sunday would be cancelled due to weather.

“This year there were a couple of registration issues so couldn’t get registration up as early as we’d want,” he said. “In addition to that, people look at the weather forecast before they register, and this year, on Sunday there’s a hundred percent chance of thunderstorms. It’s a possibility that it will have to be cancelled. It would be the first time it’s ever been cancelled, but only on account of lightning.”

Despite these concerns, however, the event took place without any major issues, according to Higham. Though there was rain in the morning, it soon cleared up, and the sun came out around 1 p.m.

In an email, Higham said the weather was “[d]ifficult to deal with at first. Strong winds and temperatures of below 50 degrees. But as the day wore on, it warmed up and the sun even showed its face. We were expecting an absolute washout and instead got a pleasant afternoon.”

Higham said he was pleased with how the event turned out, estimating that between $3,000 to $4,000 was raised for charity. 

“Considering the weather, we had a remarkable turnout. Hats off to those warriors who played at 11:00 and 11:30 when it was raining sideways and was 45 degrees. No injuries or anything — people were very cooperative and had a lot of fun. The enthusiasm for diving in the mud was fantastic.”

Three nets were set up, and for most of the day until the event ended at 4:30 p.m., all were in use, as teams faced off.

Junior Mike Anderson, a resident of Keenan Hall, said he organized and played with a team of eight people.

“Firstly, it’s a lot of fun,” Anderson said. “Nothing’s more fun than releasing your inner five-year-old and really getting to play around in mud. Secondly, it’s a great way to hang out with your friends. What’s better to do on a random Sunday afternoon than get a lot of your friends that you maybe haven’t seen in a bit and play around and have a lot of fun? And of course, all the money goes to charity, so even though it does cost you money, you know that it’s going to a good cause and that they’ll do good things with it.”

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About Andrew Cameron

Andrew is a senior from Orange County, California. He is an associate news editor at the Observer, and is majoring in Biological Sciences and English. While he has greatly enjoyed his time at Notre Dame, during the winter months he often wonders why he ever left the perennial warmth of Southern California.

Contact Andrew