By Heather Fabritze
Student Life Editor
The Phi Delta Theta MD Gamma chapter at Washington College hosted their primary philanthropy event, Crab Feast, during Fall Family Weekend.
Starting at 4 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 17, this year’s Crab Feast was the chapter’s 31st annual iteration of the event. Proceeds from the event are donated to Johns Hopkins University’s Packard Center for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Research. ALS is Phi Delta Theta’s national philanthropy and MD Gamma’s relationship with the Packard Center extends back years.
Attendees had access to unlimited crabs, burgers, hot dogs, watermelon, and other refreshments. Tickets were $40 and could be purchased prior or at check-in. T-shirts could also be bought in-person or online and included sizes from small to 2-XL for $25 each.
Shirts are currently sold out.
This year, Phi Delta Theta partnered with the Alumni House to reserve a tent in Martha Washington Square. The fraternity also raffled off a cornhole set on behalf of the WC Alumni Association.
According to Phi Delta Theta Philanthropy Chair junior Dyllan Bishop, the roughly $10,000 cost of planning and setting up the event is one of the most difficult parts of the process.
“It’s always brutal – always,” Bishop said. “A lot of work and then just organizing this…We spend an absurd amount of money on crabs, which is why the ticket price is $40. But we’re making proceeds to donate to charity.”
The crabs that the brothers of Phi Delta Theta served to attendees were locally sourced from Chester River Seafood in Rock Hall, MD. Bishop worked with the company in the months leading up to Crab Feast to ensure that the order was correct, as well as reserving MWS for the event.
Bishop, who planned the 30th Annual Crab Feast, reflected on last year’s experience when beginning the planning process for this year.
“I think we took notes after last year,” Bishop said. “What went wrong, what we can make better, and we’re hoping to make this a little closer to flawless.”
Phi Delta Theta President junior Rodger Ecker was “pretty excited” by their opportunity to continue the legacy passed down to them for 31 years. The work that previous Phi Delta Thetas did before is celebrated by Crab Feast, as well, with many alumni taking the opportunity to attend the event.
In the past, the Packard Center invited the brothers of Phi Delta Theta to tour their facilities following their donation. This opportunity allows for the brothers to see the direct effects of their philanthropy.
Phi Delta Theta brother senior Jastin Garcia-Mendoza hoped that they will see their hard work “paid off,” particularly due to his impending graduation at the end of this academic year.
“Hopefully, however much we make, we can donate to them and get invited over to their location,” Garcia-Mendoza said. “And that would be hype to call it a day after four years.”
Not only does Crab Feast draw in a crowd due to it being the first large Greek philanthropy event hosted on campus each year, it also has a large turnout due to its placement during Fall Family Weekend.
According to Bishop, families having the opportunity to attend with their students and experience WC’s culture is always a hit for Crab Feast, regardless of ticket price.
“It’s not necessarily the cheapest philanthropy event on campus but it’s one of the best,” Bishop said.
To keep up with other events that Phi Delta Theta hosts throughout the year, students can follow their chapter @wacphidelt on Instagram.
Photo courtesy of Omari Watkins
Phi Delta Theta brothers and sweethearts welcomed President of the College Dr. Mike Sosulski to Crab Feast.