This weekend, hundreds of Hobart alumni and William Smith alumnae from the milestone class years ending in 0 and 5 have ventured back to campus in celebration of Reunion 2015, which runs through Sunday, June 7.
Reunion kicked-off on Thursday night with members of the Classes of 1940 through 1964 celebrating their arrival at the 50th PLUS Welcome Reception and Dinner at the President’s House. This year, Hobart alums from as far back as the Class of 1943 and William Smith from the Class of 1936 have returned to celebrate their 50th PLUS reunion with fellow alumni and alumnae. The 50th PLUS Reunion only occurs once every three years, making this a rare opportunity for the Classes of 1964 and those prior to reconnect.
“We’ve made it back to the campus where all our fun started and are enjoying once again the beautiful college environment that despite many new changes, still remains as we remember our alma maters,” says Betty Russell David ’55.
“My favorite part about coming back is always seeing more friends and meeting new ones. People who didn’t go to HWS just don’t understand what it is about the Colleges of the Seneca that we’re just crazy about,” says Richard Wack ’64.
Alumni and alumnae, who’ve traveled from places as far as Japan, France, and Russia, are enjoying a whirlwind of events throughout the weekend. Friday kicked off with the 4th Annual HWS Classic Golf Tournament at Bristol Harbour, Mini-College classes, tours of historic Geneva, learning sessions on Seneca Lake aboard the 65-foot research vessel The William Scandling, tours of the Performing Arts Center construction site, tours of campus, the Hanley Nature Preserve and more.
Other activities included Tour de Finger Lakes, a 17-mile bike tour through the region on Friday afternoon. Organized in partnership with Geneva Bike Center, the tour was inspired by the Finger Lakes’ nationwide appeal to bikers, who travel from far and wide to the region specifically for the scenic rides.
Friday evening begins with a Street Party on Pulteney Street complete with food trucks, the nostalgic Oaks Bar tent, and a cappella performances from 5:30 to 8 p.m. The food truck selection includes Brick-N-Motor, a truck that offers seasonal local foods like vegetable gnocchi and seafood tacos; Macarollin, offering artisanal mac and cheese dishes; Marty’s Meats, with traditional pork sandwiches; Cheesed and Confused, featuring creative gourmet and traditional grilled cheese sandwiches; Dining Services is creating their own truck with a variety of sliders; and, for dessert, the Skippy’s Ice Cream truck will feature ice cream novelties. All trucks will be able to take cash or credit/debit cards for the evening.
Continuing our HWS collaboration with the Geneva community, Friday night features live jazz and the opening of the art exhibit featuring the work of Mark Jones ’72, P’14 as well as class gatherings at designated locations around downtown Geneva. Locations include Beef & Brew, Halsey’s Pub and Restaurant, Parker’s Grille, Finger Lakes Gifts and Lounge, SideShow, Eddie O’Brien’s, Riley J’s, and Lake Drum Brewing.
Saturday kicks off with sunrise fitness, including your choice of Lakeside Yoga, a spinning class, 5K run through campus, along with the tennis courts being available. Breakfast in the Great Hall of Saga is followed by President Mark D. Gearan’s annual State of the Colleges address. Lunch will coincide with the Alumni and Alumnae Associations’ awards and class gift presentations.
The annual Reunion Finger Lakes wine and microbrew tasting will be on the Quad, featuring 10 local wineries and five micro-breweries. The afternoon will give Reunion attendees time to take in the Family Festival, several open house activities at fraternities and other campus organizations and an All Class Sing In.
Saturday concludes with class dinners and the Annual Reunion celebration with live music, dancing, a photo booth, and fireworks on the Quad. Back by popular demand, the Rochester band Brass Taxi will provide the entertainment for the evening.
Festivities will conclude on Sunday with morning interfaith services in St. John’s Chapel and a farewell brunch on the Quad.
“Alternating between time mingling with various groups of old friends and simply wandering around the campus alone with my private ghosts during my last Reunion, the Colleges seemed to physically embrace me in such a way that I could feel both gratifyingly youthful and astonishingly ancient at almost the same moment,” says Chris Muller ’74. “Somehow I believe I have earned these immensely pleasant reveries and I’m grateful to everyone who rewarded me by being there, too. I can’t wait for the 45th.”
For more information about registration, specific accommodations, and more, please visit the 2015 Reunion page for more details.