This weekend, thousands of people gathered in Cottage Grove to try to reclaim the world record for most people in togas. As KLCC’s Alec Cowan reports, the effort was just one of many events marking the 40th anniversary of a comedy film shot in Oregon.
“National Lampoon’s Animal House” has given locals in both Cottage Grove and Eugene many memories. The 1978 movie has inspired regular toga parties at commemorative events, and in 2003, Cottage Grove took the world record for largest toga party.
But nine years later, a group of Australian students took that honor, with 3,700 toga wearers. Cottage Grove officials are eager to win that back.
Travis Palmer of the Chamber of Commerce says the anniversary and shot at the record are part of what makes Cottage Grove special:
"Cottage Grove loves 'Animal House', and we embrace it as part of our history, and we know that it's kind of shaped how Cottage Grove has identified itself in a lot of ways."
Mayor Jeff Gowing made a formal proclamation before a crowd of revelers dressed to party:
“Now, therefore, I, Jeffrey D. Gowing, Mayor of the City of Cottage Grove, Oregon, do hereby proclaim Saturday, August 18, 2018, as Animal House Day.”
Saturday night’s unofficial count is roughly 3,800 toga-wearers -- just enough to take the record. But Guinness World Record officials say it’s too close to call and will review the effort in the coming weeks.