Homecoming Theme Centers on 90th Anniversary

More than a thousand EMU alumni and parents of students are expected to join in remembering the past and looking to the future at homecoming and family weekend Oct. 12-14, 2007.

EMU, founded in 1917, is celebrating its 90th anniversary year, and weekend activities will focus on the theme, "Celebrate the Vision."

A "Celebration of Song and Sound" will highlight the weekend’s activities. Kenneth J. Nafziger will direct a program celebrating 90 years of music at the university – from strictly a cappella hymns to incorporating instruments and varied styles. The concert will be presented twice – at 8 p.m. Friday and 8 p.m. Saturday in EMU’s Lehman Auditorium. The program is free and open to the public.

A reception sponsored by Encore!, a music support group, will follow the program and will recognize the music leadership of John W. Fast, 32 years, and Dr. Nafziger, 30 years, respectively, at EMU.

Reunions, Meetings and More

Traditional homecoming features will include reunions at 3:30 p.m. Oct. 13 for graduating years ending in a "2" or "7," from 1962 to 2002. The "Jubilee Alumni," persons who attended EMU 50 years ago or more, will hold a luncheon and program at noon that day in Martin Chapel of the seminary building, where members of the class of 1957 will be formally inducted.

Breakfast meetings will be held Saturday morning for alumni and friends of the business and economics department; nursing, education, the sciences, Bible and religion (Haverim), music, (Encore!) and the language and literature department.

June Davidhizer, a 1978 alumna, will be inducted into the athletic "hall of honor" for her achievements as a four-year volleyball standout during a breakfast meeting Saturday of the Loyal Royals athletic support group. A display highlighting the first 50 years of athletics at EMU, 1917-67, will be dedicated on the lower level of the University Commons.

Renovations and Dedications

At 10 a.m. Saturday, EMU science faculty will give a tour of the Suter Science Center and eight learning centers and discuss plans to renovate the 40-year-old facility.

A prayer labyrinth on the hillside adjacent to Eastern Mennonite Seminary, will be dedicated at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 13. The structure was created by 1992 alumnus Kirk Shank Zehr of Harrisonburg.

An art exhibit featuring works by EMU communication arts professors Barbara fast, Cyndi Gusler, Jerry Holsopple, Lara Scott and Steven Johnson will be on display in the third floor gallery of Hartzler Library. Media will include mixed media fiber art, drawings, photography and digital images. A gallery talk and reception will be held 2:30 p.m. Saturday.


Varsity field hockey, women’s volleyball and men’s and women’s soccer games are scheduled on Saturday, preceded by a Loyal Royals "fun run" 7:30 a.m. Saturday at the EMU track.

The Paul R. Yoder, Sr., Memorial Golf Classic will be held Fri., Oct. 12 with start times at 7:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. at the Spotswood Country Club in Harrisonburg.

Special activities for children (kindergarten through fifth grade) and youth (grades 6 through 9) are scheduled at various times Saturday, and childcare for infants through age 5 will be provided during reunions and at other designated times.

During the weekend, a documentary video produced by recent alumni Tiffany Horst and Carrie Keagy will be shown several times, featuring historic images and interviews that help to interpret the growth and changes that EMU has seen over the years while remaining true to its vision, said Douglas J. Nyce, director of alumi/parent relations. "I believe that homecoming weekend will provide numerous opportunities for alumni, parents and friends of the university to celebrate and reminisce.

The registration desk in the University Commons will be open 3-8 p.m. Fri., Oct. 13, and 7:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Sat., Oct. 14.

For more information, go to www.emu.edu/homecoming, call the alumni office at (540) 432-4245 or e-mail alumni@emu.edu.