Oct 172005
Authors: Julie Abiecunas

The music was pounding, the sweat dripping and the bodies popping and locking all over the place at Higher Ground V. 2.0's final competition Saturday in the North Ballroom of the Lory Student Center.

The competition is in its second year, started by The Hip-Hop Congress on campus as a way to bring hip-hop and breakdancers from across the country together.

Craig Dumas, senior finance major, said competitors at Higher Ground came from all over, including Toronto, New York, Seattle and even Alaska.

Vern Phan, the lone Alaskan competitor at the event, said the Fort Collins hip-hop competition offers the rare opportunity to compete with some of the nation's best dancers.

"We don't have a lot of competitions like this where I'm from, so that's why I come out here for it," Phan said.

Along with the fierce competition, Dumas feels another part of the draw for participants are the cash prizes. A total of $4,000 in 1st place prizes was given away at the event. Sponsors including Red Bull and ASCSU funded the cash awards.

Categories in the event included B-Boy, MC, B-Girl and Poppin' battles.

In order to compete against their top peers in front of a large audience, many participants searched for a form of relaxation before taking the stage.

"First and foremost, I pray before I even get out there," Dumas said. "When I'm on the floor, I don't pay attention to the audience. I just focus on the dancing and having fun with it."

Andy Chanthongthip from Westminster, who has been MC-ing ever since a friend introduced him to some famous MC artists five years ago, competed in the MC battle.

"It's just the way they (other MCs) spin that's awesome," Chanthongthip said. "It's mind boggling to watch them."

Dumas thanked those who traveled to CSU to participate in the contest and called Higher Ground V. 2.0 a success. He added that the group plans on hosting the event again next year.

As sophomore psychology major Heather Delva said, "Break dance competitions are just a lot of fun to watch."

List Of Winners

$2000 B-Boy Battle – Massive Monkees

$1000 MC Battle – Phumes

$500 B-Girl Battle – Jess Effecks

$500 Poppin' Battle – B.E. Funk

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