Minerpalooza wraps up Welcome Week


Annabella Mireles

Lead singer of Melancholy 10, Che Ulibarri, makes a heart with his hands after the finish performing.

Itzel Giron

Alyson Rodriguez, Staff Reporter

On Friday, Sept. 2 the 32nd Minerpalooza took place and was a smash hit. Miners of all generations filled the parking lot outside of the Sun Bowl Stadium and showed off their Miner pride. 

There were games, jumping balloons, vendors, music and fun that filled the night. Monica Castillo was the master of ceremonies for the night and the festivities began at 6 p.m. with Battle of the Bands, which was the event that many UTEP students were most looking forward to.  

“This is my first time at Minerpalooza and so far, it’s been amazing. I’m most excited to see the Battle of the Bands,” said computer science major, Darinka Carrasco. “I hope that Melancholy 10 wins the Battle of the Bands because my friend is the pianist. It’s been a really fun night so far and I have met so many new people.” 

The two remaining bands Melancholy 10 and Sultanes del Yonke battled it out for the grand prize of two weeks in a recording studio sponsored by El Paso Live. Melancholy 10 started things off and played four original songs for the crowd. The seven-membered band of friends impressed everyone with their expert playing and cool vibes. 

“Even though we had some technical difficulties, our band powered through and still managed to put on an awesome show,” said Julian Saucedo, Melancholy 10’s pianist. “Sultanes del Yonke were amazing and it’s going to be a hard decision. I’m also excited to see the other musical acts.” 

 Following Melancholy 10 was Sultanes del Yonke who brought spice to Battle of the Bands dressed in their tasteful overalls and goggles. The crowd got up on their feet and started dancing when they played a set on stage that seemed to exhilarate the crow. 

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  • Krystall Poppin, rapper born in El Paso, Texas, performs in front of the crowd.

  • Mariachi Rock Revolution perform their last song of the night, wrapping up Minerpalooza.

  • Paydirt Pete works with the cheer team to keep the spirit going at the biggest pep rally of the year.

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After an intense battle between the two amazing bands and UTEP students and staff voting, Melancholy 10 was the fan favorite and won took home the grand prize.  

“It feels insane, I used to make these songs in my room for no one to listen to and now here we are,” said Che Ulibarri, lead singer of Melancholy 10, after his band won Battle of the Bands. “Playing at the Texas Western Gold Rush was our favorite part of our whole Battle of the Bands experience. It was a huge audience and we’d never played for that big of an audience before and the vibes were unmatched.” 

After Battle of the Bands, UTEP’s cheer, dance, Marching Miners and UTEP Diamonds joined together to put on the biggest parade and pep rally in the Sun City. The UTEP dance team even performed  a surprise dance to hype the crowd up for the rest of Minerpalooza.  

While the musical acts were happening on stage, the rest of Minerpalooza was buzzing with all  the games being hosted by various UTEP clubs. Fraternities, sororities, organizations and clubs all joined together to create a fun filled atmosphere for Minerpalooza attendees by hosting games. Some of these games included speed Loteria, henna, meltdown, toilet paper toss, Smash Bros, Mario Kart, ring toss, connect four, basketball, rugby target practice, pin the whiskers on the cat and so many more.  

“I’m having a lot of fun, the vibes are really good and there is a lot of people. My favorite part so far has been the Battle of the Bands,” said junior psychology major, Lilia Tovar. “The song Ms. Galaxy by Melancholy 10 has my heart. I’m here at Minerpalooza working with the Student Government Association to promote and recruit for the homecoming pageant. There’s going to be a talent portion, evening gown and you can win a cool prize.” 

Pete’s Playground was a big hit with the younger Miners. There were many different jumping balloons and slides for kids to go on. Entertainment was also provided for kids in attendance, one of the events  being  a magic show.  

The musical acts continued and BOZ1R kicked  off the rest of the night with his incredible rapping at 7:50 p.m. Then at 8:35 p.m. Frontera Bugalu took the stage and got everyone dancing with their fun tunes. There was not a still body on the floor, everyone showed off their moves on the dance floor.  

The next act was El Paso’s own Krystall Poppin who rapped on  stage. She showed her central El Paso pride during the performance. The whole crowd went wild when she brought a fan on stage to dance with her and her girl group of backup dancers.  

“I can’t believe I actually got the chance to see Krystall Poppin,” said Mercedes Bourjon, a junior majoring in education. “I’ve been following Krystall’s career since she started, and I was watching her in the front row and I got a picture with her.”

The last performance of the evening  was Mariachi Rock Revolution,  a perfect way to end  an exciting night. The group rocked the stage with their perfect combination of mariachi and rock music and pyrotechnics. It was a great night for everyone and Miners cannot wait for next year’s Minerpalooza in 2023.

Alyson Rodriguez is a staff reporter and may be reached at [email protected]; @alyson_rod1127 on Twitter.