USC’s Zeta Phi Rho fraternity and the university’s Special Events Committee are hoping to go down in history Friday. The two groups, along with other participants, are aiming to break the world record for most sandwiches made in one hour.
The sandwiches -- the multi-cultural frat hopes to make 20,000 ham and cheese sandwiches -- will be donated to the homeless on Skid Row in downtown Los Angeles.
Friday’s event, dubbed the 12th annual Zeta Phi "Skid" Rho, is the fraternity’s keystone philanthropy event at the USC, Gamma Chapter. Local organizations tackling homelessness such as Union Rescue Mission and the Midnight Mission will distribute the sandwiches, according to USC Zeta Phi Rho President Vincent Ong.
The current Guinness World Record stands at 5,721 sandwiches.
Over the years, the event has evolved from a few brothers making a handful of sandwiches to hundreds of students making thousands of sandwiches per year, according to a Zeta Phi Rho press release.
This year’s event had more than 450 sign-ups, but per Guinness World Record guidelines and limited space, participation was capped at approximately 350. Participation will be on a first-come, first-served basis. Sign-ups were open to USC students and the public.
The committee came up with the concept of breaking a world record, and the fraternity envisioned the experience of the event, according to Ong.
Kim Chu, the Director of USC’s Special Events Committee, said the two groups decided to work in conjunction when they realized they were both holding sandwich-making events. The fraternity and the committee decided to "combine forces and make it a collaborative event."
While one goal of the event is to break the world record, the other is to make a difference in the community.
"We want to raise awareness for the poverty problem in LA and mobilize the student body," Ong said.
Beverage companies Starbucks, Monster and Diabolo are sponsoring the event to ensure participants have ample energy to produce so many sandwiches.