Bachelor and Bachelorette fans, get ready: Ohio University’s University Program Council, or UPC, is bringing Mike Johnson to Athens for the annual “Bachelor Night” event.
UPC announced Johnson’s appearance at 6 p.m. on Jan. 27, getting fans of the show excited for Bachelor Night, more affectionately called “Bach Night,” on Feb. 23 at 8 p.m., free of charge.
Johnson was a contestant on the 15th season of The Bachelorette. He vied for the heart of Hannah Brown but was ultimately eliminated in the seventh week of the show.
However, he quickly became a fan favorite because of his social media presence and his return to the sixth season of Bachelor in Paradise.
“Mike Johnson’s a big person right now, so it was someone who we were like, ‘That’d be really cool to have,’” Abby Spencer, a senior and the university events vice chair for UPC, said.
Every year, UPC works with a manager of some of The Bachelor franchise clientele to book someone for Bachelor Night. The manager gives UPC options of clients as well as their booking prices, and then they choose who would be best for the event.
Johnson seemed to be the perfect choice for UPC, Spencer said, and the council is working on compiling questions to interview him during the night. Attendees will also be able to ask questions and take place in a meet-and-greet event at the end of the night, when they can get their picture taken and give a more personalized hello to Johnson.
For Reagan Goldberg, a junior and the creative events vice chair for UPC, Johnson was not only the perfect choice but also shares a personal connection with her.
“I really liked Mike as a choice because I actually lived in San Antonio (Texas), and I know that he’s from there,” Goldberg said. “When we watched him on Hannah Brown’s season of The Bachelorette, my family and I, we were really excited because you don’t really see people from San Antonio going to compete. And he ended up being one of our favorite contestants, too, which was really nice.”
Goldberg is spearheading Bachelor Night this year and thinks audiences are going to be pleasantly surprised and excited to see Johnson is the guest. Spencer agrees, citing Johnson’s podcast, 'Talking It Out,’ as another reason people would be excited to see him.
The event will be in person in the Baker Theater, but UPC is also offering a hybrid format for people who feel more comfortable streaming Johnson’s event.
Though Spencer and Goldberg both appreciate the duality of the hybrid format so people can have fun while still feeling comfortable, they’re mostly excited to be able to offer free programming to students and other attendees.
“That’s one of my favorite things about UPC: that we’re able to put on free events for students,” Spencer said. “What other university programs do you get to put on events like this that are free? These are once-in-a-lifetime events that you can go to that are for free, and it’s really cool to be able to do it.”
UPC is proud of the events it gets to host, but it always feels extra excited about ones like Bachelor Night that unite so many people and fans. Plus, with the struggles of the pandemic and so many cancelations of programs, it’s thrilled for the opportunity to even be able to have this event at all.
“With the meet and greet, you actually have an opportunity to get a photo with him, so that's really exciting, too, because it creates memories that last a lifetime,” Goldberg said. “Especially now within the pandemic, making these memories is super, super important because whenever you look back, you don't want to remember, ‘Oh, I had to go to all these like virtual classes,’ or ‘I could only do things like this because of the pandemic.’ You want to remember the memories that you were able to create that didn't come around very often — in a moment of need, especially.”
For more information on reserving tickets or the event in general, check out UPC’s Instagram.