Cameron Crazies Camp in K-ville

Cameron Crazies Camp in K-ville

Noah Curd

With the big Duke vs. North Carolina men’s basketball game coming up, all the tents are set up in Krzyzewskiville, or as most people call it, K-ville.

The students at Duke basketball games are called Cameron Crazies because of their antics, passion for their basketball team and especially how loud they get when Duke is on defense. They create enough noise to get up to 130 decibels which is the equivalent to standing next to an aircraft at take off. Tents in K-ville just add to the craziness of the Cameron Crazies.

Here is how the legendary tenting in K-ville came to be. Sleeping out for games is not unheard of, but this is taking it to a whole new level. The first idea for pitching a tent a week before game day came to be in 1986. Kimberly Reed was hanging out with her friends, and they all joked about how early they were going to line up for the Duke vs. North Carolina game. Kimberly said, “why don’t we just pitch a tent?” So a week before the game they decided to pitch the tent, and by the time doors opened for tip off, 75 tents were set up on the grassy lawn in front of Cameron Indoor Stadium. The line of people to get into that game though compacted quickly and violently which even caused a few injuries, so Duke needed to come up with an idea to make sure that did not happen again. They came up with the idea of line monitors to keep the lines under control. All monitors every year change the rules ever-so-slightly to close loopholes and adapt better to the Duke campus climate. Coach Krzyzewski (Coach K) has said himself that K-ville (the grassy lawn in front of Cameron Indoor Stadium) is alive, as it has adapted and changed for over thirty years.  

The numbers now for tenters is 1,200 students by the time the UNC game rolls around. There are different levels for tenting. There is (in order from longest to shortest amount of time tenting) black tenting, blue tenting and white tenting The time of tenting has grown substantially since 1986. Black tenters, tent for six weeks. Not only do black tenters tent for the longest, they also have to design their own tents. Blue tenters camp out a month before the the game and white tenters camp out about two weeks. All the levels have groups of twelve. Black tenters need two people in their tents during the day and 10 at night. Blue and white tenters need one during the day and six at night blue tenters need six at night and white tenters need two. Line monitors do random tent checks to make sure the right amount of people are in each tent. They will do checks at a normal time like one o’clock in the afternoon, or it could be one o’clock in the morning. If campers miss two tent checks, the entire tent is bumped to the end of the line, and their chance of going to the big game is jeopardized.

Even though North Carolina winters are not as frigid as Colorado winters, it can still snow and get very cold. There are certain policies that will allow students to go inside or back to their dorms; the weather cannot be colder than 25 degrees,and there cannot be more than two inches of snow. Extreme weather conditions like tornado warnings and school closures are the only times when tenting rules are not in effect.

Tenting is known nationally and this annual, crazy event adds to the strength of the already amazing Duke/North Carolina rivalry.