Sasquatch. UFO’s. Walt Disney’s cryogenically frozen head. The Loch Ness Monster. J. Cole’s talent. Regarded as too “out there” to believe, these fictitious storylines have gained cult status through the limited testimonies of people who claim to believe in such imaginative realities. Gaining some momentum amongst UCR’s student body are numerous classes that have stepped out in opposition to the renowned, and frequently cancelled, HEAT Music Festival–claiming it as an urban legend.
“I’ve seen more saucers in the sky beam down on folks compared to the amount of HEAT shows I’ve attended,” confessed Terrence Wrinkles, second-year psychology major and former ringmaster. “It’s all agenda, man. The freshmen class of 2014 claim to have landed young Lando Calrissian, Childish Gambino, as the headliner for HEAT and that something as minute as heavy amounts of clouds caused weather hazards and cancelled the show. How stupid does someone need to be to believe a UC-level university would botch a roughly $600,000 investment and cancel a then-major up-and-coming talent over a grey sky? It’s all a hoax. This show’s a hoax. When students need justification for cryptic charges/fees on their tuition statements, they choose to believe in fairytales.”
Cultivating a following of students from the classes of 2017-2020, the HEAThens are a group of Highlanders who are on a mission to denounce all talk of previous and upcoming HEAT shows. Their goal is to rid the campus of fallacies, tall tales, and myths surrounding the concert to prevent false hope and excitement towards an event that “has not and won’t ever happen!”
This year marks the first time since 2014 that a HEAT show could occur, with the likes of Post Malone and SZA set to perform. Quick to answer the atmosphere of excitement, a group of HEAThens ranging between 7-12 students—predominately freshmen and sophomores—gathered around the Bell Tower minutes after the line-up dropped February 13th with picket signs that read “HEAT Will Not Divide Us”.
As a way to fight the growing wave of students that are shutting down any excitement brewing for HEAT, Highlander Union representative Scott Krink Jr. feels the HEAThens have ignored blatant evidence of the concert’s existence and history. “In our defense, the conditions under which we would have had to set the event in previously cancelled years would have been apocalyptic to the venue. Some students underestimate the collective force brought on by 4 MPH winds and a pre-rain mist. If you watch 2012, these conditions were the preface to catastrophic conditions that we’re not willing to put our students through. They deserve better than that, just not in the form of Ciara, the Neighbourhood, and Childish Gambino.”
As the countdown to HEAT 2017 boils down to days, students are up-in-arms over whether they should make the effort to show up or stay home. With a gaunt forecast predicting a 4% chance of precipitation set for March 4th, the event could well be in jeopardy and talks of cancellation have already sprung. “Been stressing this real bad, my guy,” confessed second-year undeclared student Lena Sauce, who desperately wants to put UCR’s recent blunders with HEAT behind her. “Emotionally, physically, spiritually. It’s been weighing on me to the point where I couldn’t attend class all last week.”
WATCH: We made Malort cupcakes. They are bad.