By Allison O’Connor
“Three, Two, One!” screamed watchers as a rider was whipped around on a mechanical bull at the 40-second mark. The professional and social fraternity Alpha Gamma Rho put on Buck Off to raise money and awareness for their philanthropy, Talbot House.
Talbot House is an organization based in Lakeland that works with the homeless to get them back on their feet and off the street. One of the fraternity brothers, Ethan Brabo, gave a statement commenting on Alpha Gamma Rho’s work with Talbot House and Buck Off.
“Talbot House has been trying to define what it really means to be homeless and make it known to the rest of the public,” said Brabo. “They are really trying to fight the stigma against the homeless and prove that everyone’s situation is different.”
According to Brabo, Talbot House has resources for people who need help and are truly looking for it. They have different programs to help residents learn how to find a place to live, how to go for a job interview, and other skills to live a healthy life off of the streets.
“Buck Off is an event that has been put on in the past but has not been done in three years due to our loss in membership of AGR,” Brabo said, “but we were really excited to bring it back this semester since we have been thinking about it since last fall.”
Greek organizations Theta Chi, Pi Kappa Phi, Alpha Delta Pi, Alpha Chi Omega, Kappa Delta, Gamma Phi Beta, and Zeta Tau Alpha took part in Buck Off this year, resulting in a great turn out for Alpha Gamma Rho.
Alpha Gamma Rho includes members that are all science-based majors, whether that’s Biology, Citrus or Agricultural studies. Although there are only 12 members right now, they hope to recruit more in upcoming semesters.
When asked about how such a small fraternity as Alpha Gamma Rho could afford to put on the event, Brabo said that AGR’s alumni are very active in their activities on campus and hope to continue their involvement with Talbot House in the future: “We have very active alumni who are very well off due to their major here at Florida Southern and, being in such an agriculture-based state, our past members have done well,” Brabo said.
At the event, the boys had a mechanical bull, a food truck, music, and lawn games for people to enjoy before and after the riding competition.
After the bull-ride times were tallied, the fraternity Pi Kappa Phi won third place with a cumulative time of four minutes and 34 seconds. Sorority Alpha Delta Pi was awarded second place with a total time of five minutes and 10 seconds; in first place was sorority Kappa Delta with a total of five minutes and 36 seconds.
Fraternity Theta Chi won the participation award given at the end for having the largest number of Buck Off attendees. They finished with a cumulative time of three minutes and 56 seconds.
As Buck Off ended, students left knowing that this is an event to look forward to in coming years. The AGR’s can be found around campus or at Talbot House helping the city of Lakeland.