February 10: UW-Stout Brings Back the Snow Ball

Rachel Witthoft

Stout Chancellor Bob Meyer performing during skit night of the 1978 UW-Stout Winter Carnival. Meyer was crowned Winter Carnival king that year.
Stout Chancellor Bob Meyer (white leisure suit) performing during skit night of the 1978 UW-Stout Winter Carnival.

Dust off your vintage formal wear, the Snow Ball is back!

UW-Stout has issued a news release covering the decision to hold their Snow Ball once again. Up until the mid-1970’s, the Snow Ball was a popular social event for students during UW-Stout’s Winter Carnival. Chancellor Bob Meyer, the 1978 Winter Carnival king, explains, “The Winter Carnival was basically a way to shake off the doldrums of winter and have fun.”

Chancellor Bob Meyer at the UW-Stout Winter Carnival dance in 1978, where he was crowned king.
Current Chancellor Bob Meyer at the UW-Stout Winter Carnival dance back in 1978, where he was crowned king. Get a closer look.

This festival had been a tradition for approximately 60 years, and offered activities such as winter sports competitions, an ice sculpture contest, and toboggan races. At Snow Ball, a king and queen were crowned, live music was played, and students donned their finest dresses and tuxedos. The university and the historical society chose to bring back the Snow Ball to “create new memories for a new generation,” says Frank Smoot, the executive director of Dunn County Historical Society.

The Russell J. Rassbach Heritage Museum in Menomonie will be hosting the Snow Ball at 7pm on Saturday, Feb. 10. Returning to the stage are the Thundermen, a rock band formed in Eau Claire decades ago. Party dress, especially vintage wear, is encouraged.

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