Fall Fun In Store for 2004 Homecoming and Reunions
The Northwestern Alumni Association is adding a Halloween twist to this year's Homecoming weekend that offers fun for the whole family.
Fall Reunions 2004, set for Halloween weekend Oct. 29-31, will likely bring out lots of purple pumpkins, wigs, face paint and other funny get-ups as alumni from the classes of 1959, 1964, 1969, 1974, 1979, 1984, 1989, 1994 and 1999 return and reconnect. Alumni and their families will join students and local residents getting into the spirit of the autumn holiday.
While alumni can look forward to revisiting the Evanston campus and rekindling friendships, children will have plenty of opportunities to make their own memories. At Deering Meadow, the central site of weekend events, children can visit the Fall Festival Kids' Corner, where, on Friday afternoon before the all-class tent bash, they can play carnival games, make Halloween crafts, get their faces painted and receive trick-or-treat goodies. What's more, all kids dressed in costumes will be allowed to march in this year's Homecoming parade, which undergraduate organizers have themed"NU Has the Willies" for Halloween.
"I think it's great that kids in costume get to march in the parade," says Katherine Mahalick Buehler (WCAS84, KSM90), co-chair of the Class of 1984's 20th reunion. As a student Buehler served as co-chair of Northwestern's 1982 Homecoming. She will be bringing her husband, John Buehler (KSM90), and their three children from their Carlsbad, Calif., home for the fun."Before we moved to California (from Wilmette), we always took them to the parade, and they loved watching it at night." She says her children also love to play games at Wildcat Alley and watch Willie the Wildcat perform push-ups when the football team scores during the game.
Another addition to the weekend lineup is the alumni keynote address, part of the Alumni College education program, which includes Classes Without Quizzes faculty lectures and deans' receptions. Technology expert and 2004 NAA Merit Award recipient Larry Irving (WCAS76), president of the Irving Information Group and former telecommunications adviser to President Bill Clinton, presents"What a Difference a Decade Makes: The Internet and Telecom Revolution," a discussion of the economic, political, societal and academic impact of 10 years of technological innovation. This year's NAA Excellence in Teaching Award winners, Frederick Lewis, chemistry professor, and William White (McC61), professor of industrial engineering and management sciences, are among the Classes Without Quizzes faculty lecturers.
Those interested in career advancement can attend author Rob Sullivan's (GJ90) presentation"Reaching for the Prize: Taking the Next Step in Your Career" at the Norris University Center on Friday or meet one-on-one with staff members from University Career Services to discuss job searches or other work-related issues. Parents and grandparents of prospective Northwestern undergraduates can learn about the University's admissions process at a Friday afternoon presentation at the John Evans Alumni Center.
After the parade, alumni from NUBAA (Northwestern University Black Alumni Association) and NUGALA (Northwestern University Gay and Lesbian Alumni) plan to party in Chicago, and the NU Young Alumni Club of Chicago gathers at Duffy's Tavern and Grille in Lincoln Park.
Saturday's fun begins with music, kids' attractions and the beer garden at the Wildcat Alley tailgate at Rocky Miller Park before the Wildcats' homecoming game against the Purdue University Boilermakers. That night, each of the reunion classes celebrates at individual parties. (See box.)
Sunday's reunion events let alumni experience Chicago culture. The annual Gospel Brunch, featuring inspirational music and a Southern-style buffet, will be held this year at the House of Blues on Dearborn Street, and architectural historian Joan Viant Lindsay (C52), tour guide with Chicago from the Lake tours, will describe the cityscape along the Chicago River on an afternoon cruise.
Through the NAA web site, www.alumni.northwestern.edu, alumni can view a full schedule of events and register online for their respective class parties and other all-class events until Oct. 24. Those signing up by the early registration deadline of Oct. 8 can take advantage of discounted prices for individual events, and after that, alumni can check the site to view lists of returning classmates.