Open houses, campus tours, a banquet, sporting events and a chance to speak with the new president highlight this year’s Great Lake State Weekend at Lake Superior State University.
The annual event, which serves as LSSU’s fall homecoming, not only invites alumni back to campus but also reaches out to current students and their families.
Susan Fitzpatrick, the university’s director of alumni relations, said there have been activities all week focusing on current students. But the events scheduled for Friday and Saturday are meant to be all-inclusive.
“Great Lakes State Weekend is a collaboration of many different departments on campus,” Fitzpatrick said.
Festivities begin with a registration period and open house at the Lukenda Alumni House at 10 a.m. Friday. That will be followed by a career fair in the Cisler Center from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., an open house at the Center for Freshwater Research and Education’s office at Hillside House from 1-3 p.m., and an open house at the fish hatchery in the Cloverland Electric Plant from 2:30-4 p.m.
The Cisler Center will host the annual Alumni Awards Reception and Banquet at 5 p.m. Friday, which will honor Julie Ann Vincent, Edward F. Smith and Erin Strang. At 7:37, attention shifts to Taffy Abel Arena for the Lakers’ hockey game against the Michigan Wolverines. Fitzpatrick stressed the game will start 30 minutes later than most LSSU home games.
“It’s always a big draw when U-M comes to town,” she added.
Meanwhile, a social for female Laker athletic alumni will start at the Alpha Bar in downtown Sault Ste. Marie at 8 p.m. Anyone is welcome to join them.
Saturday’s highlights begin with an LSSU Campus Color Run/Walk at 10 a.m. It starts at the Norris Center and will raise money for LSSU’s Student Athletic Training Association and Kinesiology Club.
Campus tours begin at 1 p.m., the same time community members can meet with LSSU President Rodney Hanley in the Considine Hall lobby area.
“This is an informal reception, and anybody who hasn’t had an opportunity to meet our new president yet, this will be a great opportunity to do so,” Fitzpatrick said.
A pair of planetarium shows begin at 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. Also at 2 p.m., Laker volleyball takes on Saginaw Valley State University in the Cooper Gymnasium, and the annual Laker Athletic Hall of Fame induction ceremony starts in the Arts Center. This year’s inductees include Darrin Madeley, Mark Astley, Benjamin Dewar, Jean Kreidler, Margaret “Mugs” Olson Pollard.
From 3-5 p.m. children ages 5-12 are welcome to attend Kid’s Kollege, a science exploration event in Crawford Hall. From 3-7 p.m. they are also invited to inflatable games — featuring a bounce house and human hamster ball — outside the Norris Center. The same area will host a tailgate party for the adults beginning at 5 p.m. Attendees can bring their own food and drinks or purchase them from vendors (they must be 21 to enter).
A Women’s Walk designed to raise funds for LSSU women’s athletics begins in the Cisler Center at 4:30 p.m. The focus moves once again to Taffy Abel Arena at 7 p.m. for round two of Lakers vs. Wolverines hockey.
The weekend winds down with an alumni volleyball game in the Cooper Gymnasium Sunday at 10 a.m.
A detailed itinerary for the full weekend can be found online at alumni.lssu.edu/great-lake-state-weekend.