Balloons will be broken but records will not Friday night during a water balloon fight at the University of Kentucky.
That's because UK Christian Student Fellowship, which sponsors the event, is allowing only students from UK and Bluegrass Community and Technical College to participate. Organizers estimate that attendance will probably be about 5,000 to 6,000.
The event was declared the biggest water balloon fight in the world by Guinness World Records in 2011, when 8,957 participants threw 175,141 water balloons.
UK requested the change after the 2013 event, Fellowship director Brian Marshall said. The event did not occur last year.
Marshall would not comment directly on the 2013 balloon fight, but the Kentucky Kernel documented a fracas that broke out that year. According to the student newspaper, a few of the participants who rushed Johnson Center Field before the starting bell were tackled by members of the Fellowship's untrained volunteer security force, made up mostly of alumni and student members. At least one person was put in a chokehold.
"I think there were some misunderstandings about what happened," is all Marshall would say about the 2013 event.
"So we gave UK our word" that only students could participate this year, he said.
Still, Fellowship members have spent the past few days filling what they hope will be 300,000 balloons. The balloons were donated by Imperial Toys.
The Fellowship has been sponsoring the event since 2008 as a way to provide wholesome fun, Marshall said.
This year's event will begin at 9 p.m. at Johnson Center Field on the UK campus. Attendees must show a UK or a BCTC ID.