Family, alumni come home to campus community

by Christian McCarville

One of the biggest drawbacks for students living at college is their inability to see their families at home. Family Weekend at Rider is designed for families to reunite on the campus while also participating in many fun events. 

Former Rider students were also strongly welcomed to participate in the campus-wide events as Nov. 1 to Nov. 3 was also Homecoming Weekend for alumni.

Kicking off the fun-filled weekend, the sorority Delta Phi Epsilon hosted a haunted house event open to the public. They raised over $3,500 and all proceeds went to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

Later on, an Evening of Jazz with the Dell’Omo’s was held at Cobblestone Creek Country Club with the intention of connecting alumni and students of color, featuring pianist Kenny Gates.

Later that night, families and alumni were welcome to watch Step Up! Rider’s Ultimate Dance Competition held in the Bart Luedeke Center (BLC) Theater. This event included competitive performances from some of Rider’s most talented dancers.

For sports fans, there was a field hockey game against Sacred Heart while club ice hockey took on Drexel University at Loucks Ice Rink.

The second day began with a complimentary breakfast at Daly Dining Hall hosted by the Residence Hall Association (RHA). A 50th reunion was also held for the class of 1969 at Cobblestone Creek Country Club.

Information sessions were held throughout the day to educate families on Greek life, inclusion and study abroad opportunities. A parent forum was also held at Hillman Hall on the Princeton campus to discuss academic plans for the upcoming year. The Westminster Chapel Choir Concert was conducted by Tom T. Shelton and was also held later that night.

There were a new set of fun opportunities for students and their families on the second day of Homecoming and Family Weekend, such as a Family Feud game held in the BLC Theater. Friends and families were able to create groups and compete to win various prizes.

Bronc Bingo also took place in the Cavalla Room hosted by the Residence Hall Association (RHA) and Alumni Relations. Students were able to fill out bingo boards alongside families and alumni in hopes of winning big prizes such as Apple AirPods and an HD TV.

“Being apart of the RHA [executive] board and seeing it from that perspective was really rewarding to see everyone come together with their families and have a great time,” said sophomore marketing major and RHA member Meghan Mulhearn. “This event raised about $5,000 which is double the amount as last year’s Bronc Bingo. It is also so nice to see everyone engaged and passionate about the prizes while also supporting one another.”

The School of Fine and Performing Arts also hosted a cabaret showcase for families and alumni. This took place in the Yvonne Theater.

A men’s basketball exhibition game also took place Saturday and a large tailgate event was held in the faculty and staff parking lot. T-shirts were given out alongside performances of live music and free food.

On the last day, a football viewing party was open to the public in the Pub. This was a great opportunity for families and alumni to witness the new Pub renovations. Later that day, there were several home sporting events including volleyball, field hockey and women’s soccer.

While a large number of families came to Rider to visit their loved ones this weekend, some students spent family weekend differently.

TV, film and radio major Sarah Waldron explained, “I went home to celebrate family weekend this year because it was my dad’s birthday. I was not able to participate in the family weekend events, but this allowed me to still spend the weekend with my family.” 

Regardless of how students spent the weekend, it was surely packed with fun moments, reunited families and nostalgic returning alumni.

Published in the 11/6/19 issue of The Rider News.

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