||CHICAGO, February 1, 2000--No one's fond college memories involve cleaning toilets, removing pizza boxes or attacking refrigerator mold. So, as a thumbs-up to what's really important, Apartments.com is rewarding those who cohabit with trash, dirty laundry and rotting food in order to devote their time to what really matters in college-anything but cleaning.
The most visual national online apartment guide, Apartments.com (http://www.apartments.com) has kicked off its second annual search for the messiest college apartment in the United States. The "Apartments.com Messiest College Apartment Contest" will once again award $10,000 cash - enough to cover the grand prize winner's rent and a thorough apartment cleaning - to the most blatant example of out-of-control clutter, neglect and filth.
Those willing to confess the dirty details can enter the Contest between February 1st and March 9th by submitting up to four color photos of the nominated apartment and a description of up to 250 words answering the question: "Why is your apartment the messiest college apartment in the U.S.?" College students can enter online or print out a mail-in entry form at the Contest Web site, http://www.apartments.com/messycontest.htm. (No extra points for slime on the form.) Rules, guidelines, slovenly facts and statistics can be found at the Contest Web site.
In making their malodorous cases, some of last year's entrants wrote:
- "Coated in a mysterious crust, the kitchen emanates an odor that will help even the hungriest people stick to their diets. The main source of this stench is the two-year-old milk in the refrigerator, which I recently had a birthday party for," wrote a senior from the University of Maryland."
- "The reason our apartment is so vile? Simple. None of us have girlfriends - there's no reason to keep it clean," wrote a sophomore at Brigham Young University."
- "My bed has become a storage area, so I just sleep on the floor in my sleeping bag," wrote a junior from Ohio Northern University."
From March 20th to March 30th, visitors who read "mess defense" descriptions and view photos from the three finalists' apartments at http://www.apartments.com/messycontest.htm will thank the technology gods for not making the Internet scratch-and-sniff. To express their admiration or abhorrence, visitors can then vote for the apartment most deserving of the title "messiest college apartment in the U.S." The winner will be announced on or about April 9. For the very brave, a virtual tour of the winning apartment, including numerous expandable photos and a Video Virtual Tour, will be featured on Apartments.com. For the very resourceful, Apartments.com has unveiled a "Post Your Vacancy" section where visitors can list their un-messy apartments for rent or sublet.
Footage and pictures from the disaster that is last year's winning apartment, belonging to John Anderson of Ohio Northern University in Ada, Ohio, are available at http://www.apartments.com/lastWinner.htm.
"Seeing the footage and pictures from last year's winning apartment, this is one time Apartments.com almost regrets the fact that we offer the most visual and interactive apartment tours on the Web," said Karrie Gottschild, director of the Apartments.com Messiest College Apartment Contest. "These aren't the kind of pictures you'd normally see searching Apartments.com's listings-but we knew you'd have to see them to believe it."
Apartments.com is a leading national online apartment guide distinguished by its personalized searches, highly visual ads and affiliation with the local Web sites of more than 130 newspapers across the country, including the Chicago Tribune (www.chicagotribune.com), The Washington Post
(www.washingtonpost.com), Los Angeles Times (www.latimes.com), The New York Times (www.nytimes.com) and USA Today (www.usatoday.com). In addition to representing more than 2.5 million apartments in all 50 states, Apartments.com offers users the ability to post their own apartments for rent or sublet across the entire network of affiliated sites.
Apartments.com is owned and operated by Classified Ventures, Inc., which also owns cars.comT (www.cars.com) and HomeScape.com, which includes HomeFinder.comT (www.homefinder.com), NewHomeNetwork.comT (www.newhomenetwork.com) and MovingCenter.comT (www.movingcenter.com). Classified Ventures, based in Chicago, is owned by six strategic investors who are among the leading U.S. newspaper companies: Gannett Co., Inc., Knight Ridder, The McClatchy Company, The New York Times Company, Tribune Company and The Washington Post Company. For more information about Classified Ventures, visit classifiedventures.com.