The Vagina Monologues bring female empowerment to Ohio University

The Vagina Monologues came to Ohio University on a three day bender starting Friday February 12th until Sunday February 14th, and with it came pride, power, and love, for the vagina. If you’re not familiar with The Vagina Monologues, it is a collection of short monologues that deal with anything and everything regarding the vagina. From stories about rape to the forced beauty standards of what a vagina is supposed to look and act like, the women in the show cover it all and the vagina’s influence on women every day. The show was not like typical play, audience feedback was not only wanted from the cast, it was expected. The woo’s and claps that are usually saved for the end were encouraged throughout the show.

Some monologues addressed serious issues such as rape. In one, a cast member discussed the tens of thousands of people assaulted and forced to be sex workers during the Bosnian conflict. Others monologues were more light-hearted, including one about the various moans from a woman in a dominatrix outfit. And some monologues focused on real-life experiences. Should women be almost hairless to please men? Should we be ashamed of saying “vagina” or “cunt”?

During intermission, Carol, who did not provide her last name, said the show already has helped her come to terms with the word cunt. “It’s always bothered me a little bit,” she said, pausing to nibble a vagina-shaped cookie. “But now that I know it’s nothing to be ashamed of, I’m not as upset about it anymore.”

Carol
Carol

The most important part of the event is the representation and the unapologetic love for womanhood. The ladies came out proud and loud and even had a skit featuring transexual women. The two spoke about their experiences growing up as woman yet not looking like one. All of the proceeds from the show, went to My Sisters Place and the cast raised more than $3,000.

Vag mons cast and crew loving themselves! Baker 3rd floor!

A photo posted by Ohio University Women's Center (@ouwomenscenter) on

Students take their clothes off for a local charity

Imagine a large group of nearly naked neon students running down Ohio University’s brick streets.

Last April, that didn’t take much imagination at all as the Student Alumni Board and Phi Kappa Psi fraternity hosted their sixth annual Bare on the Bricks charity event. They raised more than $2,000 and collected 27 bags of clothing to benefit My Sisters Place, an organization that promotes safety and self-determination for victims of domestic violence.

Zac Vance and I teamed up during the event as he conducted interviews and I photographed the fun. To check out our coverage, click on this link. With such a large turnout last year, it felt like we were in a sea of half naked glowing college students who were ready to race. Students also posted about this event by using the hashtags #NearlyNaked and #BOTB on social media.

Paint The Bare
Friends and participants used their cell phone lights to help paint faces before the Bare on the Bricks charity run last year.

 

The students were able to strip down before the race to donate clothing or cash. This was the first year for the event to be held at night and glow sticks were provided as festive lights shined around the DJ tent to get the runners excited. Balloons decorated College Green and floated from the registration, information, and donation tables.

It was time to begin! The participants lined up near College Green behind a “Get Ready…Go” sign that they ran and ripped through. Police secured a blockade to allow the safety of students as they jogged in the street. There was a finisher in less than three minutes of the start time and he is pictured in the above photo. The Pigskin hosted a post event gathering with free food and music where students could go after the run. Donating to charity AND getting free stuff at a bar, who wouldn’t do this?

Pictured on the far left in the top photo is Kendra Lutes who is the Vice President of Philanthropy for the Student Alumni Board. “[Last] year’s Bare on the Bricks presented some challenges given the postponing from the original event, but I think it’s safe to say that things turned for the better,” said Lutes. “We were so blessed to have the opportunity to plan something again and the Glow-in-the-Dark proved to be a crowd favorite! I’m excited to see how the event will grow in the future years and how we can continue to advocate for local Athens non-profit organizations.”

Will you participate in the next Bare On The Bricks run? Be on the lookout for the 2016 date by following them on Twitter to get the chance to legally run half naked at Ohio University!