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Frat Bros Revive Greek Tradition with Off-Campus Parties

Published: Friday, October 19, 2012

Updated: Friday, October 26, 2012 15:10

Midnight Masquerade

Adrian Lesoing

Rhogue Entertainment founders Turtle and Jamie

Jamie and Turtle know how to throw a good party. As fraternity brothers for ASU’s chapter of Kappa Sigma, the two were in charge or organizing social events and parties for their house. That’s why, when the fraternity president asked them senior year to throw one huge party for their final year, the two boys were up to the task.

But this wouldn’t be any ordinary party. In recent years, ASU Greek life has faced a massive crack down from the University and Inner Fraternity Council (IFC). The organizations have put some rules in place that limit the type of events fraternities and sororities can have, Jamie said. A majority of these events can’t have alcohol. In order to have alcohol at an event, houses need to ask for permission from ASU, a process Jamie said would take a very long time.

“People go to school to learn but they also want to have a good time,” Turtle said. “IFC and ASU have really been coming down on the Greek community and it’s kind of sad because it’s giving a negative view of [people] in a fraternity or a sorority, automatically associating them with partying and absolute debauchery.”

The guys, seeking a way around these regulations that would damper big celebrations, approached other Greek houses with the idea of joining forces to do something bigger than they would have been able to do on their own.

“So we said let’s take the idea of throwing a party or a social and put it on steroids and make it bigger than anything the school has seen before,” Turtle said.

The school’s different fraternities put their egos aside and agreed to help Jamie and Turtle.

“What we wanted to do was create one event that didn’t have any one particular fraternity [tied] to it,” Jamie said. “It wasn’t necessarily to get around the rules, because these events are totally separate from Greek life, but it was just a way to have these events that college kids want to go to and are a lot of fun but are completely legal so that there would be no more issues.”

What resulted was the first annual Midnight Masquerade, an 18-plus Halloween party with live DJ entertainment and a bar for the 21-plus crowd. The duo promoted the event through the Greek system and the event was attended by more than 2,000 people in its first year.

“We just wanted to throw a big party for kids and it turned out to be more than just a party but an actual legitimate event,” Turtle said.

Through the success of the first Midnight Masquerade, the guys realized their knack for putting events together and drawing a lot people to them. With the momentum of that success, Jamie and Turtle embraced their talent and Rhogue Entertainment, ASU’s biggest party promoter, was born.

“Each year we’ve been shaking more hands and meeting more people, and the connections are growing exponentially to the point where we have these opportunities to bring in huge names and work with huge artists,” Turtle said.

One of their biggest supporters has been local EDM music suppliers Relentless Beats, which Rhogue teamed up with to bring bigger acts to their shows.

“We have been fortunate enough to have mentors such as Thomas Turner, owner of Relentless Beats and Troy Gilmore, partner in Sleeping Giant [Music],” Jamie said.

Though Rhogue Entertainment hosts smaller events in Scottsdale and was responsible for Reading Day Riot, this year’s ASU Undie Run after party, Midnight Masquerade remains its biggest event. On October 20, the entertainment company will host the third annual Midnight Masquerade featuring DJs Tommy Trash and Alvin Risk.

“We are catering it to ASU and want to make sure that anyone at ASU has a chance to go,” Jamie said.

The company provides transportation to and from a lot of its events, and anyone wanting to go to Midnight Masquerade this year will be able to hop on a bus in Lot 59 on the ASU campus for an $8 round trip.

“It’s really centered around making sure the students have a great time rather than trying to turn a profit,” Turtle said.

To this day, the boys turn to the ASU Greek community for help selling tickets and marketing on campus.

“We’re graduated but are trying to guide [the Greek community] away from that negative view that is placed on them by shining a brighter light on what they do,” Turtle said. “It all started within the Greek community so we’re always trying to give back and make sure they have fun.”

Midnight Masquerade, Madison Events Center, 441 W. Madison Street, Phoenix, Saturday, October 20, 8 p.m., $25  

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