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People lounging at NAIT's Nest Fest 2022

The return of Nest Fest: a 2022 recap

After a two-year hiatus, one of the biggest back-to-school events in Alberta returned for two days of entertainment, games and live music. Big Rock Brewery sponsored the beverages, and the food was provided by eat AT NAIT for under $5. If that sounds like it is too good to be true, it is not!

From its conception, Nest Fest has been a way for students to celebrate going back to school without breaking the bank. In the past, entry was $20 for NAIT students and $40 for non-NAIT students. But this year, entry was free for all NAIT students, and they could bring a friend who is not an Ook to join in on the fun. 

The event took place on Sept. 15 and 16 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. On the first day, there was already a long line of students eager to join the festival grounds in the CAT Quad. The grounds started filling up quickly, and by the end of day two, Nest Fest 2022 welcomed 2711 students.

When students got to the event, they were welcomed by friendly greeters and security who checked everyone’s bags. After passing through security, students could walk by a big outdoor stage where all the live music and entertainment were being showcased. The tables and benches were laid out near the stage so everyone could have a nice view of the show. In the middle of the Quad, volunteers and organizers set up games for everyone to enjoy. 

The event hosted various vendors from the city, including Monster Energy, who were giving out prizes to people who participated in their activities. There was also a tent where amazing swag like sunglasses was being given out to celebrate #NationalSunglassesDay. 

There was plenty of local entertainment at Nest Fest, including a lineup of local bands and talent that put everyone in a good mood. When asked about his experience volunteering and attending this year’s Nest Fest, Fraser Sockett, a NAIT student, responded by saying, “The event was well organized … it seemed like everyone was having a good time.”    

What was surprising and heartwarming to learn about Nest Fest was how much this event meant for the people who are studying away from their families. When asked why they came, one of the attendees said, “I’m new to this town and wanted to make friends.”

For those who did not get a chance to attend Nest Fest this year, the biggest back-to-school bash of the year will be back next September.

Cover Photo by NAITSA

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