Guests channel the 1940s at the Meadow Brook Ball

Alyssa Ochss

The Golden Grizzlies dressed up in their best on Friday and Saturday to enjoy a night full of dancing and fun at the Meadow Brook Ball. The ball took guests back to the 1940s, and many followed Audrey Hepburn’s lead by dressing similar to her famous appearance.

The ball is Oakland’s longest standing tradition as it started in 1974 and celebrated number 45 this weekend. Guests and the committee were creating history with each decoration they placed, friend they made and activity they took part in.

Members of the Meadow Brook Hall staff were positioned throughout the hall to provide guests with a bit of the history throughout the night.

Angelina Allen, president of the Meadow Brook Ball Committee, and Meagan Raudabaugh, committee treasurer, said they started planning in March of the previous year and went all the way up to time of the event. Allen said making the event memorable is the committee’s top priority.

“[Planning the event means] trying to think of everybody’s interests to make sure it’s fun for everyone and something that students can remember forever,” Allen said. “It’s one of Oakland’s oldest traditions, so we like to keep it going.”

The theme this year was based around the movie “Breakfast at Tiffany’s,” originally released in 1961. There was turquoise décor, a flip book station, tarot readings and many other activities and events inspired by the movie.

Sarah Anthony, committee vice president, and Kristina Stevanovic, committee secretary, were really pushing for the theme this year since it was one of their favorite movies.

“We absolutely love Tiffany’s, so this really hit close to the heart for us, and I think that’s why we were so passionate about planning it,” Stevanovic said.

Many guests enjoyed the event with its various activities, as well as the history that surrounded them. Justin Anderson, accompanied by Autumn Frieze, said the ball was a fun way to get involved and get dressed up.

“It’s fun to get dressed up and be in a really historical place,” Anderson said. “We’ve actually picked up a lot [as] we’ve walked around the house.”

Caroline Mitton and Sean Brar loved the décor of the ball as well as the body artist, who they have visited for two years now.

It’s a great event and obviously the student organizations really come together for this,” Mitton said. “The Meadow Brook Ball Committee really pulled it off this year, it’s really impressive.”   

The committee members said they appreciated everyone who braved the cold weather to celebrate the ball and the mansion with them. Allen said she remembered what the hall was mainly built for and how it tied into their theme.

“The purpose Matilda [Dodge Wilson] built this mansion was to throw parties and it fit into our theme very well,” she said.

The history can be seen throughout Meadow Brook Hall as it is coming up on its 90-year anniversary, and it made the night all the more special for attendees.

“One of my favorite parts is being able to remember how beautiful the mansion is even 90 years later,” Raudabaugh said.