BRANDON – Under the theme of “Forever Blue and Gold,” Brandon University has released the schedule for its expanded fall Homecoming. This year’s Homecoming will celebrate 50 years of Brandon University and welcome back all alumni, faculty, staff, retirees and friends with a four-day community celebration. Everyone is invited.
“Homecoming this fall will cap an amazing year of celebration for Brandon University. This is the 50th anniversary of the first class of official BU grads, as we transitioned from Brandon College,” said BU Interim President Steve Robinson. “Our theme this year honours the proud traditions of our history as Brandon College, acknowledges our success as Brandon University, and proclaims our ambition for the future. No matter when you came here, what you studied, where you worked, we are all connected by our ties to this campus. Past, present and future, we are Forever Blue and Gold.”
The BU50 Homecoming will take over the Brandon University campus from October 11–14 this year, with something for everyone planned over the four-day event.
“We get things rolling on Thursday evening with events across campus, including a special pro series concert and reception evening at the BU School of Music, a celebration of authors in Education, and a Night Under the Stars at the BU Observatory,” said Carla Eisler, BU’s Director of Advancement and Alumni Affairs. “All of these events — like everything at Homecoming — are open to the entire community as well as everyone who has a connection to Brandon University.”
Homecoming continues on Friday with a day of reunions. Many of the classes celebrating special anniversaries will hosting their own gatherings to reminisce and reconnect on Friday. One in particular will be the Class of 1968, which was the first to graduate with a “Brandon University” degree after the institution received its official charter.
Also on the schedule for Friday is an afternoon reception for faculty and staff, including retirees, at which all current and former students are also invited to come mix and mingle with professors and friends from all eras at Brandon University.
Friday evening, the official Homecoming Kick-Off reception will take place at the Healthy Living Centre, as will a BU Bobcats Basketball Reunion, while current Bobcats take to the court for pre-season basketball and volleyball games.
“This year’s BU Bobcats basketball reunion follows in the footsteps of our successful and very well-received hockey and football reunions. These events are incredibly rewarding to host because alumni are so happy to reconnect with friends and former teammates, back at a place that inspired and meant so much to them,” said Tyler Crayston, BU Athlete Services and Events Coordinator, who is organizing the basketball reunion. “Nostalgia is a powerful emotion and when you combine that with the rich basketball legacy shared on our campus, this reunion has the makings of another amazing celebration for alumni and fans.”
Finally, Friday night will be capped by a special keynote address at the Western Manitoba Centennial Auditorium.
“We are very excited about who we have lined up for Friday’s keynote,” Dr. Robinson said. “I am eager to reveal an exceptional presence who will anchor our 50th anniversary Homecoming.”
Saturday will be a day devoted to family and fellowship at Homecoming, as the campus sparks alive with activity, including a vintage car show, family entertainment, campus tours, a games day, food trucks and so much more. Start the morning at the cartoon cereal bar, or the Bobcats Wall of Fame Induction Brunch, then visit our alumni authors table and book launch, stop in to try on BU garb at the Bookstore, and be sure to stick around. The evening will feature the classic BU Homecoming awards gala and reception indoors, while the outdoors will rock to the sounds of a music street festival and beer gardens.
“Saturday will be hopping,” Eisler said. “We have more planned than we could possibly list, and it seems like every day we are finding more academic, athletic and community activities that are happening on campus and that we can add to the agenda.”
After such a full day, things calm down for a smooth conclusion to Homecoming weekend on Sunday. The weekend will culminate with a farewell brunch on Sunday — the perfect time for the final exchange of recollections as well as phone numbers and email addresses.
Most of the BU50 Homecoming 2018 weekend is free, although space is limited at some events. A small number require tickets or free registration. For the full schedule of events, including opening hours and registration requirements, see BrandonU.ca/Homecoming.