The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

Fraternity has non-alcoholic fun

Scott Gurgel

Finding a place to party on weekends, that doesn’t serve liquor, could be a difficult task if it wasn’t for 1404 Fridays.

Located at 1404 State St., the Phi Gamma Delta or FIJI social fraternity serves free food, pop and gives away prizes.

Over the summer, senior member Josh Peterson and David Popko, senior recruitment chairman, thought of a new way to get their name out on campus. Now, every Friday students are invited to the fraternity’s house.

We want people to recognize FIJI as more than just the house on the corner, Popko said.

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The party is open to all students from 5 to 7 p.m. every Friday and has no cover charge. Food and prizes are available thanks to contributions from sponsors.

The sponsors for these parties are local businesses, such as Gordy’s IGA, of Chippewa Falls, which provides some of the food.

“Peterson was good enough to go and get sponsorships (and) we’ll continue to run it as long as the budget holds out,” Popko said.

In addition to the free food and prizes, students can play volleyball, shoot pool or hang out with friends.

“It’s a great time to meet new people and provide an atmosphere where people can just hang out,” senior member Jason Seeger said.

Nineteen students currently belong to the FIJI fraternity, but as 1404 Fridays gain more popularity, they hope to expand.

“Our general focus is to promote brotherhood and unity in the frat and help out the community,” sophomore member Jason Reynolds said.

The fraternity was founded in Eau Claire in the mid 1970s and members have lived at 1404 State St. since 1980.

FIJI holds the university’s highest fraternity GPA and its members are ranked high amongst all males at the university, sophomore member Tim Friesch said.

FIJI is one of three fraternities at Eau Claire that are alcohol free.

The decision to become a “dry house” was a way for FIJI to set a good example, said Friesch.

The fraternity is also involved in service projects to help out in the community.

Projects include volunteering at the Special Olympics and helping out at Fanny Hill’s haunted trail. Their upcoming service project will be cleaning up the park at Big Falls.

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Fraternity has non-alcoholic fun