Muncie Gras can have a tendency to overload the senses.
The eyes, for example, could see the scantily-clad burlesque dancers, the lights of the EDM tent and a couple of dogs decked out in beads and sparkling purple hats.
And as the sun went down, it became nearly impossible to not see the light-up cups that cost $8 to buy and $5 to refill — on top of the $20 ticket ($15 for pre-ordered tickets) to get in.
Rachel Billingsley, a junior marketing major, was holding one of the flashing drinks and said Muncie Gras is worth the cost of attendance, regardless.
"People, they mainly focus on the product," she said. "But what you need to remember is you're paying for an experience."
Walking from one end of Muncie Gras to the other required navigating around small clumps of friends and the occasional attendee trying to catch plastic bead necklaces thrown down from second-floor apartments, mixing with the intermittent rain.
Senior finance major Alyssa Fearnow said she enjoyed seeing her classmates in a less-than-professional environment.
"It's been really fun," Fearnow said. "I mean the rain kind of sucks, but it's been cool seeing people that I normally see in class and super school-like. Seeing them out doing crazy stuff at Muncie Gras is fun."
Live music blared from the main stage on the south end of Walnut Street, and in certain spots it mixed with the bass pumping from the burlesque tent and EDM tent.
"It's been like waking up in a nightmare kind of, but in the best way possible because this place is insane," said Jesse Connors, who graduated from Ball State last year and starts graduate school in the fall.
Connors laughed and corrected himself.
"Instead of a nightmare, it's a dream," Connors said. "It's just a really good dream, there's a bunch of drunk people walking around and they're all yelling at me, which is pretty normal, but what can I say."
But the cost can be prohibitive. Evan Brown, who graduated from Ball State in May 2016, joked that the issue could be avoided with a little deception.
"You just don't tell the friends that it costs $20 until they're walking in," Brown said. "Then you say, 'Oh wait, it's 20 bucks.'"
He wasn't speaking in hypotheticals, either.
"Yeah, that's what they did to me," said Austin Michael, one of Brown's friends. "I drove all the way up from Indianapolis."
But with beers in hand and smiles on their faces, Brown and Michael seemed to have made up in the unique atmosphere of Muncie Gras.
It's the atmosphere, Fearnow said, that made attending — even in the rain — worth the cost.
"It is a little overpriced, but they only do this once a year so you might as well let loose," Fearnow said. "And I'm about to graduate, so go crazy."