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Ah, Alumni Weekend. The food, the friends, the fun! You spend 8,688 hours out of the year looking forward to 72 precious ones spent celebrating the Best Weekend Ever. But how best to spend your time? It’s a question scholars have pondered for generations (or since 2009).
What follows is a sample schedule with an emphasis on packing as much fun as humanly possible into every last minute of Alumni Weekend. We call it the Completely Improbable, Highly Illogical Guide to Doing (Nearly) Everything at Alumni Weekend.
Stop one: 8:30 a.m. Civil and Environmental Engineering Golf Outing
Deerfield Country Club, 507 Thompson Station Road
Forget about hitting the snooze button, you’re hitting the links! Grab your clubs for 18 holes at nearby Deerfield Country Club. Don’t worry, a coffee and bagel station (and lunch) are included with the cost of registration. Not a bad way to loosen up for the weekend!
Stop two: 3–11 p.m., Check-in and Registration
Trabant University Center Multipurpose Rooms
What’s the first thing of think of when you hear “Registration”? At UD’s Alumni Weekend, it should be fun! Grab your Dela-bration t-shirt and mug to get you ready for Friday night and who knows, you might run into old friends you didn’t even know were coming for the weekend! Don’t forget, the UD staff will be on hand to answer any questions you might have. Peak waiting times are usually between 6:30 and 8 p.m. and you’ll be long gone by then, most likely at your next stop.
Stop three: Various times, College Receptions
Various locations around campus
Anyone else work up an appetite while registering? Just me? OK. Well if you ARE hungry, refreshments and appetizers will be the order (hors d’oeuvres) of the day at the various college receptions around campus. Reconnect with old classmates and staff, swap undergrad stories and grab some snacks!
Stop four: 8–11 p.m., Dela-bration
You know it. You love it. The one party to rule them all! Come enjoy food, fun and music with over 5,000 of your fellow Blue Hens on The Green, making it one of the highest IMPM rates (Instagrammable Moments Per Minute) of any activity on campus. Perhaps, best of all, UD is excited to continue the “Blue Hens Give Back” tradition of support by donating $10 from your Dela-bration registration fee to the Delaware Fund.
Not bad for Day One, NOW GET SOME SLEEP!
Stop five: Sunrise, UD Botanic Gardens
Alumni Weekend is a marathon, not a sprint, so start your Saturday with a stroll through the beautiful UD Botanic Gardens, featuring 12 gardens in 15 acres, for a little peace and quiet in preparation of the day ahead., Prefer to get your day started with a sweat? Swing by the Lil Bob starting at 9:30 a.m., the third floor weight room will be open for use. Regardless of how you start your day, get pumped for the afternoon as we try to see and do it all!
(Note: 40th, 45th and 50th Reunion events will be taking place for the majority of the day beginning at 10 a.m. Learn more about those events.)
Stop six: 10 a.m., Zoom In-DIY Microscope
Center for Composite Materials, 101 Academy Street, Room 106
Alternative stop: The Buzz on Beekeeping at the UD Apiary, South Campus (right next to the Botanical Garden)
Looking for an activity for the whole family? For just $15 kids ages 10 and up can build a functioning microscope, with a little help from some UD alumni, and take it home to use when they’re done! Action runs from 10 to 11 a.m. here, so if you work quickly, that should leave enough time to head a few blocks north to …
Stop seven: 10–11:30 a.m., The Power of STEAM: Science, Technology and Art for Kids
Willard Hall Education Building, 16 West Main Street
Alternative: Gearhead White Clay Bike Ride, Spencer Lab, 130 Academy Street
Let the little ones blow off some STEAM (see what we did there) with fun art projects and activities on The Green, while you learn how UD’s Children’s Campus incorporates these activities into its curriculum. No kids? No problem! Bring your bike helmet and join up with MechEng Blue Hens and friends for a spin from Spencer Lab through scenic White Clay. Refreshments to follow!
Stop eight: 11 a.m. –1 p.m., Dining Hall Brunch with Mascots
Caesar Rodney Dining Hall, 350 Academy Street
When one undertakes a tremendous physical challenge, such as jam packing an Alumni Weekend schedule until it is bursting at the seams, it is important to properly fuel one’s body. Doing so with the presence of mascots isn’t required, but highly recommended. Grab some delicious food, a mimosa or two, and maybe get your face painted or grab a balloon animal.
Stop nine: 11 a.m., noon, 1, 2 and 3 p.m., UDairy Tour
Did you save room? I hope so! Exit the dining hall, cross the street and grab the shuttle which will take you directly to the Creamery! With this being the only day ALL YEAR that tours of the Creamery are given, are there any excuses not to do this? No. Did we mention taste tests are allowed? While on South Campus, consider checking out the Cooking Demonstration at STAR!
Alternative: Diamonds Walkway Information Station, noon–6 p.m., between Main Street and Old College
Don’t need any more dairy in your life? No problem! If the Creamery isn’t your jam, stop by to learn about the Delaware Diamonds Society, and check out the walkway that recognizes donors who have generously contributed to UD for five consecutive years. Trail mix and water bottles will be available!
Stop ten: 11 a.m–2 p.m., Warner Hall—A Farewell Celebration, The South Green
The Towers Farewell and Open House, Christiana Commons, 1 Christiana Drive
Feeling full? Good thing we’ve built in a little time to digest! Let’s slow down and say farewell to some old friends. The Towers have been home to more than 50,000 students since arriving on Laird Campus in 1972. This open house will offer light refreshments, pictures of the Towers through the years, a chance to leave a message on the walls and even visit a sample apartment on the first floor. Then there’s Warner Hall, which is closing its doors for residential use after 105 years. Take the opportunity to see some of the treasured antiques, historical hidden notes and one final look at the dorm rooms in the oldest residential hall on campus.
Stop eleven: Noon–3 p.m., Delaware First Spirit Stations
The North Green
Time to get your UD spirit on! Take some Instagrammable pictures at our larger-than-life selfie station, get your face painted (all ages welcome!) and play some lawn games! A phone charging station, lemonade and UDairy ice cream (yes, more ice cream) is available. Plus, you’ll have the chance to score some free UD swag, because frankly, you can never have enough UD swag.
At this point you’re probably spent and in need of a break. For the particularly adventurous or stamina-blessed individuals out there, you could always try to squeeze in a stop at the 4th Annual Cornhole Tournament or 4v4 Sand Volleyball Tournament over at Harrington Turf. In all likelihood though, it’s probably time to catch your breath before diving into your official class reunion.
For those of you celebrating your 10th through 45th reunion, the action starts at 3 p.m. on The South Green. The Class of 2014 and the rookies (Class of 2018) will party on The Green from 5 to 7 p.m. Regardless of what year you call your own, all reunion celebrations will feature open bar, heavy hors d’oeuvres and an opportunity to tell all of your friends how you managed to check off (nearly) every activity on the Saturday check list!
It’s here. You can see the finish line. Literally.
Stop twelve: 9–10:30 a.m., Kids Fun Run and Blue Hen 5K
Assuming you still have the energy, lace up and let loose for the 11th annual Alumni Weekend Blue Hen 5K (or Kids Fun Run if you’re traveling with the pack). Be sure to wear plenty of blue and gold as a special prize is awarded to the individual displaying the most UD spirit! Or if you’re completely exhausted by this point (and who could blame you), pull up a lawn chair and enjoy watching others exercise first thing in the morning. It was a packed Alumni Weekend and you deserve a little R&R!
Now this is not the ONLY means of attempting to do EVERYTHING at Alumni Weekend 2019. There are dozens of fun, engaging and interesting events for all ages to participate in throughout the weekend. Think of the above list as a jumping off point, a buffet of some (not all) potential options, or simply the illogical ramblings of a UD fanatic who can’t wait to tackle the weekend with all the gusto of an undergrad chowing down on Klondike Kate’s nachos.
Orson Welles once opined, “Ask not what you can do for your country, ask what’s for lunch?” These are wise words to be sure, but as it applies to UD Alumni Weekend 2019 it’s worth posing a follow-up question: Why stop at lunch?
Alumni Weekend isn’t just about reminiscing with friends, it’s about reminiscing with taste buds! While there is no shortage of activities that entice every one of the five senses, today we’re talking taste in this UD Foodie breakdown of the Best Weekend Ever.
Whether you spent your UD years hanging with Arts and Sciences or the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, there’s a Friday alumni reception with your name on it to satisfy that pre Dela-bration appetite! Spent your formative years majoring in Mechanical Engineering? Then pull up a plate and plasticware for the MechE Family Cookout outside Spencer Lab. Maybe you graduated from the College of Earth, Ocean and Environment, in that case, you can look forward to enjoying drinks and hors d’oeuvres with former classmates. And if you associate with alumni from the College of Engineering, we have two words for you: pasta bar.
For a complete list of all Friday college alumni receptions click here!
If you’re going to rock out at the event of the year, you better fuel up! Chow down on hamburgers, hot dogs and Malibu burgers (vegan option) along with a HUGE array of toppings so you can have your meal how YOU want it, including Coney Island style, Reuben style and Cincinnati style to name just a few! That’s just the start, we’ll have mac and cheese wedges, Philly soft pretzels, cookies, hummus and pita and so much more!
Hillel Alumni Brunch
10:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m.
Hillel Kristol Center for Jewish Life, 47 West Delaware Avenue
Fancy starting your day off with bagels and a schmear? Join your fellow alumni for breakfast and schmoozing as you get set for the first full day of Alumni Weekend! Bloody Marys and mimosas will be available as well!
Dining Hall Brunch with the Mascots
11 a.m.–1 p.m.
Caesar Rodney Dining Hall, 350 Academy Street
If you’re the kind of person who likes to start each day with a hearty meal and a heaping helping of Blue Hen fun, then you probably need to make sure your Saturday includes the Dining Hall Brunch with the Mascots. Enjoy some of your favorite foods including chicken and waffles and a donut wall, plus sip on a delicious mimosa and have some fun with YoUDee and Baby Blue as they swing by your table for a visit! The kids will have a blast with face painting and balloon artist stations. Don’t forget to stop by our green screen booth on your way out for a fun family photo!
Tour of UDairy Creamery
11 a.m., noon, 1 p.m., 2 p.m. & 3 p.m.
South Campus, adjacent to Fred Rust Ice Arena
If this doesn’t get your taste buds revved up, you just may not have taste buds. Get a behind-the-scenes tour of the store and processing facilities, learn how ice cream is made from cow to cone and of course, try some ice cream! With more than three dozen delicious flavors to choose from, it’s impossible not to find something that will leave you saying, “Can I have seconds?”
STAR Tower Interactive Cooking Demonstration and Tour
100 Discovery Boulevard, STAR Campus
Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for life. While we can’t promise any fishing demonstrations, we can promise a whole lot of fun once you step inside our state-of-the-art Demonstration Kitchen and witness our nutrition faculty members craft a delicious healthy recipe. This demo is for chefs and non-chefs of all skill levels!
Diamonds Walkway Information Station
All meals, no matter the size, hold a special place in our stomachs, even snacks. With that in mind, as that mid-day craving hits you, why not stop to learn about the Delaware Diamonds Society, check out the walkway that recognizes generous donors who have contributed to UD for five consecutive years and grab some tasty trail mix while you’re at it!
Double Dips for Double Dels
The North Green
Falling in love and the allure of ice cream: two forces that despite your best efforts, simply can’t be stopped. If you and your spouse both graduated from UD, you already know the joy of being Double Dels. Well, we want to celebrate your love for each other and UD in the most delicious way possible, an ice cream social! Join us for this free event, featuring a photographer who will be on hand to take pictures of you and your spouse while you enjoy your sweet treats at our beautiful location on Old College Lawn.
Perfect Pairing: Vino and Vogue
Harker ISE Lab Lobby, 221 Academy Street
Raise your hand if you’ve picked a bottle of wine solely because of the cool label. Yup, we have too. But what exactly is it that makes this artwork grab our attention before we grab it off the shelf? We delve into that at this unique event that pairs six unique wines (two red, two white, one rose and one sparkling) with displays of original fashion design provided by the talented students of our School of Fashion and Apparel. Hors d’oeuvres will be included with the purchase of your ticket as well.
Blue Hen Beer Garden
The North Green
There are a handful of three-word phrases that truly elicit joy from the masses: unlimited craft beer is one of them. What better way to close out a full day of Alumni Weekend fun than with some buds and suds at the Blue Hen Beer Garden. Reminisce about the good times you had on The Green with heavy hors d’oeuvres that pair perfectly with our large selection of craft beer, featuring old favorites and exciting new ones to try. Your ticket purchase entitles you to unlimited samples!
So with all of that, you’re ready to eat your way through Alumni Weekend! Don’t forget to bring pants with a little extra give in the waist and be sure to floss. Above all else, have fun!