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University dorm tradition continues while dealing with pandemic

A University of Illinois’ dorm tradition of singing through the phone still continues after dealing with the pandemic.

After the absence of singing live to callers last year, Dial-A-Carol at Snyder Hall is back with on-air performances. Dial-A-Carol is the longest-running tradition in University Housing, which has been hosted by Snyder Hall since 1960.

Groups from the U of I campus community volunteer to sing Christmas songs, for one week, 24 hours a day, to callers. Anyone can call and request a Christmas song of their choice.

Dial-A-Carol volunteer Oluwaseun Adediran said she has been involved since her freshman year.

She said so far calls have been made from about 47 different states and 17 countries.

“Some schools will call like some teachers will call like, Hey, do you mind singing for like my fifth grade English class or something? Or some people are like calling for their kids right before they drop them off at class,” Adediran said.

Due to the continuous pandemic, there have many different changes that Dial-A-Carol has to adjust for healthy reasons. Social distancing is implemented this year in order to avoid large crowds near one phone.

“On a regular year, you would come and you’d bring like, a bunch of people. And if there are not enough phones, you would all just like gather around one phone,” Adediran said. “Now we’re trying to limit that just to prevent, like, just too much crowding in one spot.”

Adediran said she hopes Dial-A-Carol will bring holiday joy to people.

Picture of Luis Velazquez-Perez

Luis Velazquez-Perez

Luis Velazquez- Perez recently earned a B.S. in Journalism with a minor in Latina/Latino studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is now pursuing his Master's in Journalism. Aside as an intern at Illinois Newsroom, Velazquez-Perez has written for The Daily Illini, Cicero Independiente and C-U CitizenAccess. He aspires to be a bilingual public radio journalist

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