The ABCs of BSD

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Maurice Yacowar left two legacies at the University of Calgary-one well-known and loved and one well-known.

Not only is the former Dean of Fine Arts the founder of the Gauntlet, he is also credited as the co-creator of Bermuda Shorts Day.

"The way Maurice tells the story is that [he and a friend] wrote on the chalkboard 'wear bermuda shorts tomorrow' and then they had a marbles competition," said U of C Students' Union Vice-president Events Chris Kerr. "The next year more people wore bermuda shorts and then somehow drinking became a part of it."

BSD gained momentum over the years and is virtually unstoppable.

"The SU and administration decided to team together and control it," explained Kerr. "Once it started being managed and hosted by the SU, it gave us the opportunity to use SU money to bring in bands."

This year's annual year-end fête will be bigger than ever with two indoor student stages and a beer garden able to accommodate 1,700 students. Yacowar will even be on stage explaining how the last-day-of-classes party came to be.

There are other, less "fun" changes to the BSD format. This year every student wishing to enter the beer gardens is required to get a wristband in advance and wear it all day. Tables will be set up in the North Courtyard of the MacEwan Student Center from April 9–12 and on April 15 from 9 a.m.–5 p.m., in the Social Science foyer on April 11 from 9a.m.–5 p.m., in the Dining Centre on April 15 from 4–8 p.m. and outside the Den on April 12 from 5–11 p.m. Students must bring their student ID and an ID showing their date of birth to one of these tables to have a wristband placed on their wrist allowing admittance into the beer gardens. Students can also bring one guest but they must be with the student at the time the wristbands are received.

"I picked the comfiest ones that I could buy," said Kerr, addressing concerns over wearing a wrist band for a potential eight days.

Campus Security will have extra officers on duty as well as paid duty officers from Calgary Police Services. Although there are no checkstops on campus, CPS generally set them up just outside the university grounds.

"Everyone likes to see young people enjoy themselves and we like to see that done in a safe fashion," said Campus Security Manager Lanny Fritz.

BSD activities officially start at 11 a.m. on April 16.