The Great Gustie Gathering, also known as Gustavus Homecoming 2015, is September 26 and includes multiple new and classic events that alumni and students alike can look forward to attending. A few of these events include Rock the Hill, Nature: A Walking Play, and a Rave in Alumni Hall. Additionally, the Epsilon Phi Alpha Fraternity will be hosting a Homecoming reunion for the first time in over 50 years.
Finally, the seven-year-long fundraising initiative, Campaign Gustavus, will also be coming to a close following the football game against Augsburg College. President Bergman will announce the final number and the celebration will move to the Homecoming tent.
Assistant Director in Alumni and Parent Engagement Kasey Linde is excited for the events that bring alumni together.
“Rock the Hill is number one the biggest event that’s different from all the past years,” Linde said.
Flood Plain Four is the first musical act comprised of two Gustavus graduates and two retired professors. MVP Smash, a ‘Top 40s’ group is the second act, and Rockin’ Hollywoods, a group who has played at many Gustie weddings and is well known among alumni will be the final performance. Luke O’Connor, a current sophomore student will DJ to end the night.
Linde says they’re hoping to expand each year and make Rock the Hill even bigger.
“To get students and alumni together is our main goal. We want to make it a ‘day’, you know there’s a game every weekend, we want to make Homecoming special,” Linde said. “Students, stay in the tent! Talk with the alumni, you never know what sort of connection you’ll make.”
As of Sept. 17 there have been 430 tickets sold which doesn’t include the free tickets for children and current students.
Co-Executor for Special Events in the Campus Activities Board and a senior Biology major, Alexa Peterson is looking forward to all the special events leading up to Sept. 26.
“I’m really looking forward to the Lip-Sync Battle on Friday which will be a fun competition between organizations and on Saturday we have Pyrotechniq, a fire and light show, and then we’re going to have a rave night in Alumni at 10 p.m.,” Peterson said.
However, those aren’t the only Homecoming events students can look forward to. Along with the classic Medallion Hunt, CAB is bringing back the Pizza Off by popular demand and a new T-Shirt trade. Students can bring in an old, gently used T-Shirt to donate and then they’ll receive a free Homecoming T-Shirt. All the donated shirts will be going to Partners for Affordable Housing in Mankato.
“It’s a unique outreach and volunteer thing we’re trying out,” Peterson said.
The Great Eppie Gathering, the Epsilon Phi Alpha Fraternity reunion, will also be taking place during The Great Gustie Gathering. The reunion used to be a tradition but died in the 1960’s.
“We were founded in 1928 so it’s our 87th birthday and we’re inviting all the Eppies back on the Hill. We’re going to have our own section of the tent during the day and then host a barbeque at our house in the evening,” Alumni Relations Chair and Senior Political Science and Communication Studies double major Jace Riggin said. “We’re hoping to bring it back this year, so we can have it every year.”
There are 572 living Eppie alum and there will be just under 100 returning on Saturday.
Homecoming is a great place to connect with Gustavus alumni and Riggin is looking forward to that with both the Great Eppie and Gustie Gatherings.
“It’s part of the Gustavus education, getting access to this alumni network. So go to Homecoming, mingle with some alums! There’s a lot of things you can do, don’t be afraid because they’re more than willing to help you,” Riggin said.