Who Even is Sadie Hawkins?

By Maria Grau
Staff Reporter

So by now you may have heard that PVI is hosting its first ever Sadie Hawkins dance. A Sadie Hawkins dance, for those of you who do not know, is a dance where the girls have to ask the guys. Finally, all the girls will know the agony our boys go through every Prom and Homecoming season by having to come up with a creative and cute way to ask someone.

But while we are on the subject of tradition, how did the Sadie Hawkins dance even come about? And who the heck is this Sadie Hawkins? Well rest easy, because I am about to enlighten you as to how the whole idea was begun.

You wouldn’t have guessed it, but it turns out that the character of Sadie Hawkins was first introduced in a comic strip, first published in 1934 by Al Capp, called “Li’l Abner,” according to the website Today I Found Out. Capp’s cartoon is centered around the Hillbilly town of Dogpatch, and the backstory of “Sadie Hawkins” as a way to get the two main love interests together. Miss Hawkins was a young girl who waited around for fifteen years without any suitors, so her father devised a plan to find her a husband.

The plan involved the declaration of a “Sadie Hawkins Day,” in which all the eligible bachelors in the town of Dogpatch were forced to participate in a race. In this race, Sadie would chase all the men, and whoever she managed to catch would be her husband. The men were not particularly thrilled with the whole ordeal, but all the young ladies, who were tired of waiting around for a man, were fascinated by the idea of taking their future into their own hands and, literally, catching a husband. So the girls of Dogpatch decided to hold a “Sadie Hawkins Day” every year. If they could catch a man, and drag him across the finish line before sundown, he would be forced to marry them.

The dance would be held the night before the big race. The ladies would wear boots with nails on the bottom, and while they were dancing with the boys, they would stomp on their feet so they wouldn’t be able to run very well the next morning. Around the time that the cartoon was printed, the idea of a “Sadie Hawkins Dance” became popular on college campuses. It was eventually slightly modified into the tradition we now have today, where the girls ask the guys to the dance.

And that is how we came to have a “ladies’ choice” dance at PVI, but how is the student body feeling about this new type of dance?

So far, despite the competition to win free tickets, there have only been a few publicized askings to Sadies. Are the girls too scared to ask anyone? Or maybe they are just doing a good job at hiding it? Either way, it seems that only a few couples so far have announced that they are going.

“I feel like the girls have been asking for this dance for like four years now and as soon as there is a dance, everyone decides not to ask anyone,” said David Anand ‘16.

Some of you may remember a survey last year asking students whether they thought a Sadies Dance was a good idea or not. The feelings were mixed, so the original plan, to have a Sadie Hawkins Dance last year, turned into a “Spring Fling.” according to Student Body President Colin Armstrong ’16. “We were contemplating hosting a Sadie Hawkins dance because there are always mixed feelings about it. We talk about it every year and this year, we decided to give it a shot. The responses so far have been really positive and we’re looking forward to a great night on Friday!”

Despite the enthusiasm from the Student Government Association, some of the student body think this dance was sprung quite suddenly, and when asked whether they would be going or not, the majority said “no.”

“I think the Sadie Hawkins dance takes away from the magic of the Black and White Affair,” said Caitlin Kwalwasser ‘16. and for the upperclassmen, that may be true. The majority opinion seems to be that no “spur of the moment” dance could possibly live up to the classic Homecoming or Prom.

I can say that we’re all really excited about it and we’re hopeful for a great turnout. We’re trying to come up with creative ways to make this dance different from all the other ones. None of us have ever planned a Sadie Hawkins before but I think it’ll end up being a ton of fun. With the pep rally, O’Connell game, and the short week, the Sadies dance will be the perfect end to a great week and a nice start to a long weekend,” said Taylor Marsengill ‘16.

No one can deny that the dance will be the perfect start to this upcoming long weekend, but will the turnout be great? Some may be going to the girls basketball game on Friday instead.

Others just don’t think the dance is worth going to or couldn’t convince their boyfriend to say yes.

“I am not going because my boyfriend said that if I asked him, he would say no,” admitted Amy Creel ‘16.

Let us know if you are going to the Sadie Hawkins dance by relying to the poll on the Panther Press homepage.

Featured image from Twitter user @PVI_SGA shows PVI students Antonella Henson-Vendrell ’18 and Noah Gurley ’18 posing for a photo following Antonella’s Sadie Hawkins proposal.



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