Fresno State Centennial Homecoming attracts alumni, friends

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Fresno State Centennial Homecoming attracts alumni, friends

California State University, Fresno’s Centennial celebration kicks into a higher gear with a Homecoming week of activities culminating in a parade through campus, the Tailgate of the Century and a football game against New Mexico State all on Oct. 16.

A centerpiece event of the week is the Fresno State Alumni Association’s Top Dog Alumni Awards Gala, recognizing individuals from throughout the university who have distinguished themselves after leaving campus. The gala begins at 5:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 15, in the Save Mart Center.

Athletics kicks off the week with a Western Athletic Conference soccer game in Bulldog Stadium between the Bulldogs and Hawai’i at 1 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 10.

At 3 p.m., the Armenian Studies program hosts a reception for alumni and supporters at the Henry Madden Library and there will be a “History of Jazz Band A” concert, featuring an alumni combo, at 8 p.m. in the Concert Hall of the Music Building.

On Monday, Oct. 11, student Homecoming events begin at 11 a.m.-1 p.m. with the traditional minibike races, “Jeopardy!”-style trivia contests, music and more, followed by daily activities leading up to Saturday.

At 4 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 13, the College of Arts and Humanities begins its Centennial Exhibit at the Leon S. Peters Ellipse Gallery on the second floor of the Table Mountain Rancheria Tower at the Henry Madden Library. The exhibit – part of the college’s monthlong Centennial celebration – begins an intensive run of events that will bring distinguished alumni to campus.

Highlights of the college’s events:

  • Thursday, Oct. 14, Smittcamp Alumni House – Posthumous induction of Roger Tatarian into the Mass Communication and Journalism Alumni & Friends Hall of Fame. Mr. Tatarian retired from a distinguished journalism career as editor in chief of United Press International to become a Fresno State professor and mentor to a generation of journalism practitioners.
  • Oct. 14, Leon S. and Pete P. Peters Education Center (in Student Recreation Center) – Phebe McClatchy Conley Centennial lecture by Dr. Carlos Noreña, a University of California history professor whose expertise is the Roman Empire.
  • Friday, Oct. 15 – Distinguished alumni panel discussions organized by the departments of Communication, Music, Mass Communication and Journalism, Art and Design, Linguistics, English, Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures, Philosophy and Theatre Arts.
  • Saturday, Oct. 16 – Film screenings of “Ratatouille” (1 p.m., Alice Peters Auditorium, University Business Center) and “The Wild Bunch” (4 p.m., Peters Education Center), by alumni Brad Lewis and Sam Peckinpah, respectively.

Oct. 16’s events will bring thousands to campus to mark Fresno State’s 100-year metamorphosis from a teacher-training school in 1911 to a broadly diverse, community-serving 21st century university distinguished by academics, research and athletics.

The “Tailgate of the Century” begins at 1:30 p.m. in the Peace Garden, adjacent to the library and will continue until 6:30, an hour before the football game kickoff. The event, sponsored by the Fresno State Alumni Association, will include a tri-tip dinner ($35 per person) and appearances by the Spirit Squad, TimeOut and the Fresno State Bulldog Marching Band.

Tailgaters also will be able to view the parade as it passes through campus.

The parade, featuring vintage cars, floats and other attractions, steps off at 3 p.m. from a parking lot north of the Save Mart Center. The route runs north on Woodrow Avenue, west on Barstow Avenue, south on Campus Drive and then the sidewalk to Keats Avenue, then east to the Smittcamp Alumni House and back to the parking lot.

Halftime activities at the football game will include recognition of the Top Dog Alumni Award winners and a Centennial salute by the marching band. After the game, which will be televised nationally on ESPNU, there will be a brief fireworks display.

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