Annual Spectrum event sees largest turnout yet

Lacey Alexander

Staff Writer

Troy’s Spectrum Alliance’s annual showing of “Rocky Horror Picture Show” saw record numbers during the event on Monday, Oct. 30.

Spectrum Alliance, an organization dedicated to providing education on and safe spaces for LGBTQ+ persons and issues, hosted its sixth annual  showing of the cult-classic film “Rocky Horror Picture Show.”

The event typically takes place around the Halloween holiday and features a showing of the hit movie, props to interact with the audience and film, and a costume contest.

“This event allowed people to celebrate Halloween in a fun and safe environment,” said Patrick Faircloth, an assistant professor of counseling, rehabilitation and interpreter training and the faculty adviser for Spectrum.

“In many ways the movie and the event (which included a costume contest with a prize) allowed students to celebrate diversity, and I think celebrating diversity in a fun and safe way is always a good thing.”

Tickets were sold to members for $1 and non-members for $3, with prop kits to be used during the interactive portions of the film being sold at $3. Spectrum members took turns operating the table outside of the Trojan Center on Oct. 24-27.

When the event first took place, it was held on the Troy campus in a classroom in Patterson Hall. The event has since moved to the Arboretum, where the latest showing took place on Monday at 8 p.m.

This year’s event had the biggest turnout yet. Julian Carroll, a senior political science major from Dayton, Ohio, and public relations officer for Spectrum, said that the event welcomed 54 attendees.

“There were also 13 costume contest contestants, which is three times as many as last year,” Carroll said. “I was overjoyed by the turnout … it meant that the executive committee’s hard work to increase membership and retention has paid off.”

The winner of the costume contest was Kirby Pitchford, a junior environmental biology major from Dothan, who attended the event as a flamingo. He won a bucket full of interactive props to use during the interactive portions of the film.

Spectrum member Sidney Coker, a senior English major from Tallassee, dressed as a doe for the event. Coker has participated in the “Rocky Horror Picture Show” event many times and said she was proud to have been a part of this latest one.

“We’ve had this event every year that I’ve been here,” Coker said. “And this is definitely the best one … I’ve watched it start as a tiny little thing at Patterson and grow into a party in the middle of the woods at the Arboretum.”

Freshman Spectrum members enjoyed their first Rocky Horror showing as well.

“I think it’s important,” said Chloe Arrigo, a freshman dance major from Panama City Beach. “It brought diversity and something fun and different to our school.”

Carroll said that the event allowed a more “personal” environment for both members and nonmembers to interact.

“It fosters LGBTQ community awareness and history through media and creates a more personal environment for outreach and availability,” Carroll said.

Liz Ogden, a junior interpreting training major from Montgomery, attended Monday’s event. She brought a friend from out of town with her who has seen “Rocky Horror Picture Show” “three times now and absolutely loves it.”

“The event was hilarious because the movie was interactive, and you always knew when something was coming up because people would go digging through their bags looking for the right props,” Ogden said. “There was a part of the event where the movie watchers had to throw toast and rice and toilet paper with the movie.

“My favorite part was having to duck down in my seat in order to avoid getting pelted with the toast being thrown towards the screen. I still got hit with toast and toilet paper.”

Spectrum meets on Tuesdays in Patterson 214 at 7 p.m. and discusses topics ranging from transgender issues to coming-out stories. More information can be found on the organization’s Facebook group, “Troy Spectrum Alliance.”

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