|June 6, 2003|
ReUnion 2003: was there too much to do?
Robert '49 and Virginia Abbe at dedication of Abbe Hall on May 30
When one alumnus jokingly complained that there was too much to do at ReUnion weekend, another quipped, "You sound like me at Disneyland. That's a good problem to have, isn't it?"
"This was a complete campus effort with faculty, students, administrators, and over a dozen different departments involved," said Nick Famulare '92, director of alumni relations. "From dedications, to academic lectures, footraces, student presentations, campus tours, ReUnion Class gifts over $24 million…it was amazing. The Union spirit is alive and well."
Here are some highlights of what many have called "the best ReUnion ever":
Alumni returned from all over the world – including one who traveled 11,000 miles from Singapore – representing classes from 1932 to 2002.
Friday featured the dedication of Abbe Hall as the new Alumni Center and offices for College Relations. The restoration of the former Parker-Rice estate at 1148 Lenox Rd. was supported by gift from Robert '49 and Virginia Abbe. Two rooms in Abbe Hall were dedicated to the classes that supported their restoration: the Library to the Class of 1973 and the Conference Room to the Class of 1953.
Showdown at Minerva's Race
Also on Friday, the Garnet Guard luncheon in Jackson's Garden was well received as Dean Tom McEvoy and students shared their thoughts about the House System.
Saturday's alumni parade, which first took place in 1911, featured all anniversary classes (1938 through 1998). The class of 1963 took the Van Voast/Class of 1941 Cup for the class having the best costume in the parade. The Class of 1953 took the Anable Cup for the largest number of classmates in the alumni parade, the McClellan Cup for the greatest percentage of classmates at ReUnion, and the Class of 1943 award for the most outstanding ReUnion effort.
Sy Gluck '49, El Harp '53, and Frank Messa '73 received the Alumni Gold Medals at the Alumni Convocation. Dan Lundquist, vice president for admissions and financial aid, received the Alumni Council's Meritorious Service Award.
ReUnion Classes presented President Roger Hull with gifts totaling $24,318,328, which included a recent gift of $20 million from John '38 and Jane Wold.
A number of alumni and students said they found the traditional senior handshake very moving. A member of the class of 1953 wrote in the 50th class directory that he had a fond memory of shaking the hands of alumni from the class of 1903 during his senior handshake 50 years earlier.
More than 60 alumni listened to Larry Lieberman '83, president, 4Ever Wild; Sara Friedman '98, stage manager; and Bob Bernhardt '73, music director and conductor, Chattanooga Symphony and Opera talk about their experiences in the entertainment industry. A presentation by Dick Steinbrenner '58 on Schenectady's American Locomotive Co. had standing room only.