A Review of Loyolapalooza 2023

One of Loyola University’s longest traditions, Loyolapalooza, was held on April 31 inside Reitz Arena due to inclement weather conditions. Originally supposed to take place on the quad, students gathered in McGuire Hall and Reitz Arena to take advantage of the varying selection of food, entertainment, and free merchandise that was provided.

Upon entry to McGuire Hall, you were met with a buzzing energy. In the middle of the room were caterers that offered a wide selection of food, such as corndogs, eggrolls, pretzels, and more. 

Megan Connolly ’24 said, “I think they definitely tried to make the food special for Loyolapalooza, but it could have been better. In the future, I would like to see more carnival-type foods.”

After exchanging your tickets for some snacks, you were directed to several tables run by the Student Government Association. These tables were offering the student body tote bags, water bottles, and t-shirts to act as a souvenir for each corresponding class year. The festival also included numerous interactive activities, such as an obstacle course, an inflatable bungee run, face painting, and caricatures. However, for most, the musical performances were the main attraction of the day.

Although McGuire Hall was the main appeal towards the beginning of the day, the musical guests could be found in Reitz Arena, getting the audience prepared for Jeremih, an R&B artist, who was this year’s headliner. Performances by Justin Calem and Kaya Ables, Reggie Shardow, and Liquid Courage acted as appetizers while Jeremih was the main course scheduled for 3:30 that afternoon.

What was considered to be an eccentric performance, the energy of Jeremih’s performance echoed throughout the arena, which can be credited to not only the artist himself, but DJ Knockout, his backup dancers, and his entire crew.

Nicole Westwood ’24 said, “My favorite part of Loyolapalooza was when Jeremih came onstage and started performing! It was fun when he played his old songs that everyone in the crowd knew.”

The performance had an incredible sense of energy and excitement that can be credited to his overwhelming and unexpected stage presence. 

Westwood said, “I liked our musical guest! He seemed sort of off-brand for Loyola just because a lot of his songs are more suggestive, but he was high-energy and engaging. A highlight was when a bra got thrown onstage and he wore it around his neck for part of his show.”

As a result of Loyola’s school spirit, there was a palpable sense of excitement and comradery amongst those who attended the event, many of whom have been looking forward to Loyolapalooza all year. 

According to Westwood, her only critique, which many would agree with, was that she “[wished] it could’ve been outside. I think it would be a lot more enjoyable if everyone could spread out a little bit more and be on the quad.”

Overall, Loyolapalooza was a successful event that provided a much-needed distraction to the entire student body as finals season approached. This event brought together students of all class years and showcased the talent and creativity of the Loyola community.