The Mob is looking to answer a common student complaint: There’s nothing to do in southern Utah.
The Mob, which organized Saturday’s Sand Hollow Mayhem, is an organization that began at Southern Utah University. Brian Cameron, one of the organizers of Saturday’s event, said the Mob began as a group of friends figuring out ways to have fun beyond the usual movie night.
“What they wanted to do was solve the problem of ‘What is there to do tonight?’” Cameron said.
The Mob, led by creator Clay Hunter, began organizing nightly events for students, as well as promoting school activities. As these events grew in popularity, with more than 500 people showing up for a Slip ‘N Slide event, Cameron and Hunter decided to reach out to students at other schools.
“We started thinking, ‘You know, why don’t we start including more schools, kind of broaden it out, and make a weekend of it?’” Cameron said.
In order to provide more entertainment for students, the Mob looked toward other friends who had done everything from professional wakeboarding to amateur Blob-jumping.
“That’s where we got all of these ideas to essentially put all of that stuff in one event,” Cameron said.
Gabe Phillips, a senior communication major from Hurricane, said that the Sand Hollow Mayhem was meant to go forward last fall, but that organizers ran out of time before the cold arrived. A similar event in June served as a preview to Saturday’s event.
“We had a DJ, we had food, we had sponsors and it worked really well, so we decided to kind of push the envelope and make it bigger this year,” Phillips said.
The event drew students from not only DSC and SUU, but also northern Utah schools, as well as out-of-state schools like Arizona State University and University of Nevada-Las Vegas. Sponsors included Hyperlite Wakeboards and Nitro Circus, as well as a partnership with the Dixie Mud Run.
But, the highlight of the day for many attendees was the Blob. The Blob is essentially a lake trampoline that sends participants hurling into the air.
“You climb onto the Blob and three guys will jump on it, and then you fly up into the air and try to do cool flips, but you’re so frozen with fear that you just flop,” SUU student Alecia Hunter said.
Dale Finlinson, a junior business major from St. George, said the Blob was a little scarier than it appears.
“From here, it doesn’t appear like it’s that crazy a jump, but it’s actually a little scary,” he said. “I’m really tall, so I’m not sure what way my body is supposed to go.”
Phillips said he wanted activities like Sand Hollow Mayhem to show students all of the things there is to do in southern Utah.
“I’ve gone rock climbing, I’ve gone skimboarding, I’ve gone longboarding, I’ve gone swimming, I’ve done all of these things a lot of people don’t really know about,” he said. “If you come here and you’re from a bigger town, obviously St. George isn’t a thriving metropolis…they’re often hit by that wall (of) there’s nothing to do here because they don’t know about it.”
Hunter said she thought the organizers succeeded in spreading awareness.
“Utah is full of beautiful things,” she said. “It seems we get really bored in college, and we say, ‘There’s nothing to do,’ but this is pure, awesome entertainment. This is the best quality entertainment and the best memories.”
Gentry Hatch, a sophomore general education major from Orem, agreed.
“You just have a lot of stuff to do that’s super close, and people just don’t realize it because they’re either not from here or they just don’t know about it,” she said. “I didn’t know about it either. I didn’t know this lake was so close and I love it.”
SUU student Sacha Toussaint said Utah outsiders wouldn’t expect events like Sand Hollow Mayhem.
“This brings something new to the table,” he said. “It’s definitely worth talking about when you talk about Utah.”
Phillips said he wanted Sand Hollow Mayhem to get students excited about southern Utah.
“Any of these things we’re bringing to Sand Hollow are about 10 to 15 minutes away,” he said. “If you get with your friends, if you make a little bit of a plan, you can go and do any number of these things, and other things, that St. George and Cedar City have to offer.”