Pillow Fight

Jeffrey and Quinn Bailey-Cannon are excited about the pillow fight. Photo by Charlotte Renken.

As a new regular editorial, “Getting Off Campus” strives to give students at the Santa Fe University of Art and Design a look at some of the most interesting places and events in Santa Fe and surrounding areas.

The Great Albuquerque Pillow Fight

Location: Bataan Memorial Park

Date: Next fight will be in April.

Cost: Free!

Distance: An hour drive from campus.

Don’t forget to bring: Pillows and pajamas!

After the last day of the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta, Oct. 15, married couple Jeffrey and Quinn Bailey-Cannon set up Bataan Memorial Park for the Great Albuquerque Pillow Fight. Jeffrey is dressed from head to toe in zebra print sleepwear as he and Quinn wait for attendees to show up for the massive pillow battle. The event started at 3 p.m. and by 4 p.m., adults and children alike were wailing on each other with pillows and stuffed animals, laughing as they ran around the park.

Jeffrey and Quinn came up with the idea for a pillow fight one day while sitting on the couch watching television. They decided that night to make a Facebook event to advertise the fight. “We thought about having a pajama contest and some other events but we wanted it to be low commitment so we decided on just a simple pillow fight.” It required very little planning. The idea was to post it online and just see who showed up.

Josh Quinnett, Michela Dellorco, Jose Noriegg, Manny Crespin and Andrea Salazar embrace their inner child. Photo by Charlotte Renken.

While it was a relatively small event, the approximately 35-45 people who did show up experienced a fun day of unadulterated whimsy. There was a 50/50 mix of adults and children ages two to 12, all of whom grabbed a pillow or two and joined in the fun. Every few minutes, a group of the children would decide to gang up on one adult in an ambush before yelling “Retreat!” and scrambling back to one of the time out zones (the picnic tables.)  “I think it’s important for children to see grown ups being silly,” says Jeffrey. “They need to know that you don’t have to stop having fun when you grow up.”

A group of 20 somethings who showed up were dressed in footie pajamas and 80s metal band wigs also joined in the fun. “This was so great. Thank you for having this,” participant Manny Crespin said to Jeffrey and Quinn as the group was leaving. He was wearing a pair of Angry Birds footie pajamas and a mullet wig.

Jeffrey and Quinn are not new to this kind of shenanigan. Last year, the couple put together a Halloween Pumpkin Caroling event in which people went from house to house singing for their neighbors. They’ve also done water balloon fights in public and costumed events for the community.  Part of the reason Jeffrey and Quinn wanted to have a pillow fight was to allow people to blow off some steam. “You have to allow yourself to be silly sometimes,” says Jeffrey. “It prepares you for dealing with the serious stuff in life.” Both Jeffrey and Quinn believe that engaging in “off the wall” activities from time to time allows for emotional growth.

Jeffrey and Quinn plan on having another pillow fight sometime in April. With the success of this year’s event, they’re excited to see it become bigger in the years to come. The couple has the philosophy that “maybe people don’t ever have to grow up.”