Last weekend, love was in the air at Hope College. From brightly decorated cupcakes to COVID-friendly dates for the couples of Hope, students found ways to celebrate the hearty holiday. One event that was organized to help students get into the Valentine’s Day spirit was the Hope College Crafters and Prism joint card-making event “Be My Valentine,” which occurred during the holiday weekend.
There are few events on campus that are joint collaborations between clubs or organizations, but “Be My Valentine” was an exception. Lindsey Heidma (’22), a co-leader of Hope College Crafters, explained how the event came together: “My friend Grace—who is another co-leader of Hope Crafters—and I reached out to Prism and asked if they wanted to do a collaboration with us, like partner for an event. We had the idea of Valentine’s type stuff because it was coming up. So it came to be kind of a last minute thing, but it worked out really well.” Prism has only been on campus for a little over a year. Sylvia Rodrigez (’21), the mentoring president of Prism, stated that “I was super excited because I had really wanted to partner with Hope Crafters. Prism is super new and Hope Crafters have been here for awhile. I think it’s super fun to collaborate, so I was excited when I saw their email.”
Luckily, the pieces fell together for this lovely event. Those at the event had fun, while also showing just how many different types of love can be expressed. When students walked into the Great Room of the Bultman Student Center on February 13, they found construction paper laid out like the LGBTQ+ pride flag with other crafting supplies for easy card-making. For the organizers of this event, it was important to express that there are all kinds of love that should be celebrated, especially the day before Valentine’s Day. Grace Kennedy (’22), the other Hope Crafters co-leader, added, “We liked the idea of embracing all types of love and showing that on campus.” It seemed like many students agreed and had fun making cards, some adorned with other kinds of pride flags.
Hayla Johnson (’23), who decorated her card for a friend with the bisexual pride flag, said the event “was very cute! We gotta spread love not COVID!” Another attendee, Hailey Schumann (’23), added, “It was nice to see everyone! Events like this are helpful when we cannot all meet up regularly due to COVID. It was also a relaxing event and it broke up a busy weekend. I really enjoyed it!”
The atmosphere among crafters was jovial and celebratory. Some students remarked how momentous it was that a queer Valentine’s Day event was able to take place on Hope’s campus, and that there were so many attendees. Rodriguez commented, “I think it went really well! I honestly did not expect this many people to come out, so it was really nice to see some familiar faces, do some lovely crafts and make some cards!”
Both clubs have more to come for this semester, so students should be on the lookout for information. If any student wants to become involved with Prism, queer or ally, they will be at the Center for Diversity and Inclusion Keppel House from 7 to 9 p.m. on Monday nights, or they can be reached from their email, email@example.com, or their Instagram, @hopecollegeprism. Hope Crafters can similarly be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.