The generic theme did not disappointPembroke June Event

June Events are hard to pull off. Faced with misguided comparisons to May Balls, they can feel wholly underwhelming. Pembroke June Event had no such issues.

Pembroke’s committee managed to ensure that the night provided enough for the guest in terms of both quantity and quality. This was done through the presence of May Week staples, as well as flourishes that made sure the evening felt particularly opulent for the £85 price tag.

The food was a case in point. Savoury sustenance was provided by a cheese toastie stand and a barbeque, both essential for a night of boozy fun. As guests we still felt spoilt by the presence of Venezuelan street food, paella, and a vast range of sweet desserts. I felt able to go on a culinary tour of the event, as the range of readily available food meant queues were kept short. The waffles, Eton mess, and chocolate covered bananas were finished off with a generous helping of cheese and wine, leaving a sense of satisfaction tempered only by the nausea of an ill-timed trip on the bouncy castle.

Only my gluttony limited my enjoyment of the swingboats, dodgems, and space hoppers, which provided immediate non-musical entertainment, an essential option for events that cannot pull the grand musical names of larger May Balls. However, with this in mind, the range of musical entertainment on offer was astounding, with three different stages, including the chapel, which provided different atmospheres to enjoy as each individual made their journey through the night.

The wide number of events across the small site made navigation complex, and was not assisted by an event programme that closely resembled a train timetable. However, it was a relief that there were chairs and tables in a number of areas, where one could rest weary feet (and stuffed bellies) while planning the next area to explore.

Though initially dubious about the theme, a feeling strengthened by the clumsy and frankly ugly website, the décor was particularly pretty, with a lovely use of light projection and cloud models. However, despite the prettiness of the site, the committee seemed to neglect the logistical need for more toilets, with many being single loos in college buildings, creating long queues. The need for queue organisation was another logistical issue, where the close grouping of some food stalls meant that queues merged and became more of a scrum.

Generally, however, these criticisms are nit-picking. Pembroke left me feeling satisfied, but also spoiled. It had a range of simple pleasures that were supplemented by flashes of opulence that gave the night a happy, enjoyable feel. From a basic yet filling hot-dog stand, to the unique pleasure of seeing a live owl in the front court: Pembroke’s committee truly managed to master the art of how a June Event should be done.