Cristal Ramirez of The Aces points the microphone out to the crowd while performing during their show at the A&R Music Bar on March 8. Credit: Willow Mollenkopf | For The Lantern

There’s no such thing as a free meal, but students can enjoy three harmonious courses at the Schottenstein Center for no charge this week thanks to the Ohio Union Activities Board.

OUAB announced its final addition to the lineup of the annual Welcome Back Concert — alternative band The Aces — Tuesday on Twitter. The announcement was followed by a post stating that all of the roughly 7,200 free tickets for the event had been claimed.

The Aces will open up the concert Friday at the Schott, preceding DJ and rapper SABA, the other supporting act for headliner Quinn XCII.

The Aces have long been considered for an OUAB concert, Abby Hickey, OUAB concert committee member and third-year in strategic communications and English, said. Hickey added that she is excited about the energy the all-girl group will bring to the show.

“The Aces have a completely different dynamic than people we’ve brought in the past,” Hickey said. “We haven’t had a ton of female powerhouses on our stages for a while, and that’s something we’ve been pushing for — trying to find someone to fill that gap.”

The band’s selection was revealed on OUAB’s Twitter early Tuesday morning. Within three hours, another tweet disclosed that the show was officially sold out. Hickey said the organization saw a large influx of online ticket reservations after the announcement of SABA last week, leaving only a couple of hundred tickets by the time of Tuesday’s post.

While last year’s Welcome Back Concert sold out, Hickey said that OUAB’s spring concert did not. She said the concert committee was pleased by the large waves of ticket claims that occurred after each artist announcement, showing that new students were enticed by each of the diverse musicians.

“That’s really what we were aiming to do for this concert — make sure we had something for everybody, something that everyone could be excited for and rally behind,” Hickey said.

Karla Haddad, OUAB’s director of concerts and a fourth-year in marketing and political science, supported this statement. Haddad said that while OUAB has tried single-genre concerts in previous years, she is excited to experiment with a broader approach.

The student organization aims to cast a wide net with this year’s lineup, balancing complementary yet diverse genres, Haddad said. As with the selection of Quinn XCII to headline, she said that OUAB is always on the lookout for up-and-comers.

“With each of these acts, I feel confident that we could look back in a few years time and be like, ‘Damn, look where they are at now,’” Haddad said.

Haddad cited her first experiences attending OUAB events as her major motivation for giving students the best possible experience. She said those early interactions with the organization were what made her decide to join.

Haddad also said  she and the other members feel a sense of obligation to supply concerts any student can enjoy because all of the funding for OUAB events comes from a portion of student activity fees.

“We wouldn’t be an organization without it,” she said. “So we hold the mission close to us.”

OUAB’s Welcome Back Concert is Friday at the Schottenstein Center. Doors will open at 6 p.m., with music starting at 7 p.m.