We’ve all wanted to break a world record at some point in our lives. The thought of being included in that giant, glossy record book is a thrilling but unlikely dream. This year, however, Wabash Valley and Indiana State aspired to make a dream become a reality. On Sept. 2, more than 1,600 people gathered in the Hulman Center in an effort to make a difference and to shatter the record for longest high-five chain. Known as High Five for the Kids, the event was hosted by the United Way, a global organization that seeks to improve the quality of life for every individual. The event raised money for children in need through donations and sales of T-shirts and giant foam hands.
“The donations they’re collecting today will benefit the Backpack Program which is a program that sends food (to) students who don’t have any,” said Nancy Rogers, vice president of university engagement.
To ensure the success of the record attempt, the event was carefully organized. Each participant had to stay in line and, upon receiving a high-five, had 10 seconds to high-five the next participant. The chain was so long that many got tired and had to sit down to wait for their brief but essential turn. Evelyn Carrera, an official from the Guinness Book of World Records judged each high-five’s credibility by walking down the expansive line. Participants were thrilled to be part of such a large project.
“It gets the community actively involved,” said Audrey Nelson, a senior public relations major. When the chain was completed, 1,647 high-fives had been delivered, demolishing the record of 1,391 set in China last April. The crowd was already roaring as Carrera stepped forward and announced “Welcome to the Guinness World Records family.”