Saturday afternoon at Centennial Homecoming and Family Weekend is packed with special events

Eastern Mennonite University’s Homecoming and Family Weekend is fast approaching. This fall is a special opportunity to celebrate EMU’s Centennial … 100 years of dynamic, countercultural, Anabaptist education.

While commissioned events like The Steel Wheels concert, theatrical production, Century Bike Ride, and an art exhibit headline this special celebration, there are many other new events on Saturday to consider attending.

“The creative team here in alumni and parent engagement has had a lot of fun coming up with new activities in the last couple of years, like EMU TenTalks, the Campus Canvas Fun Run and the Fall Festival,” says Jeff Shank, director of alumni and parent engagement. “We’re excited to add Affinity Drop-ins and Decades Gatherings this year, two opportunities to catch up with friends, professors and even people you don’t know but have similar interests or were at EMU at the same time.”

Affinity Drop-in and Decade Gatherings

The Affinity Drop-ins are from 1 – 3 p.m. at various locations around campus.

“We often hear that alumni who attend their class reunion wish they could see classmates from grad years different than their own, those who shared a special experience with them, or professors that had an impact on their lives,” says Shank.

The following are currently scheduled, but Shank says more gatherings are in the works. He suggests checking the website or an updated schedule in the days before Homecoming and Family Weekend.

  • Jim and Ann Hershberger: Central America cross-cultural reunion, 1985 – present;
  • Honors program alumni with Mark Metzler Sawin/Judy Mullet;
  • Riverside nursing alumni;
  • EMU tutor reunion celebrating 10 years of the writing program with Vi Dutcher and Linda Gnagey;
  • Black Student Union alumni and parent soiree;
  • Latino Student Association alumni and student gathering;
  • Library student /alumni assistants;
  • MA in biomedicine program;
  • Men’s soccer alumni with Coach Roger Mast and some previous coaches;
  • Alleluia Singers of 1969;
  • Women’s volleyball alumni with Coach Carrie Bert and some previous coaches;
  • Other various athletic teams (more info to come).

 Another opportunity to meet alumni is The Decade Gathering on Saturday at 3 p.m. on Thomas Plaza. The first 500 alumni to attend will get a dip of Kline’s Ice Cream’s special EMU flavor, Centennial Cookie Crunch.


This event premiered last year at Homecoming and Family Weekend to an overflowing audience. The 2 p.m. event in the MainStage Theater features restorative justice practitioner and slam poet Jodie Geddes MA ‘16, entrepreneur and EMU Alumnus of the Year Anxo Pérez ’97, and musician and lead singer of The Steel Wheels Trent Wagler ‘02.

“Last year, there was standing room only,” Shank says, “so come early for a good seat.”

Canvas Fun Run

One of the most colorful events of the day that is sure to create a special momento to take come, The Campus Canvas Fun Run is back again. Cruise the 2-mile course with alumni, faculty, staff, parents, students and youth of all ages. Take in the music and positive vibes on the front lawn. The best part: participants will finish the race covered in color. Registration is required and make sure to indicate your t-shirt size.

Fall Festival

Bring blankets and lawn chairs, listen to Americana band The Steel Wheels (tickets required for concert venue), eat dinner from one of our local food trucks or set up a grill in one of the tailgating areas and enjoy the fall setting on campus. Yard games, inflatables, Li’l Royals Kids Zone and time to mingle will all be available at this event from 3-7 p.m.

Make sure to visit the Alumni and Parent Reception Tent to visit with campus representatives or purchase a special EMU t-shirt (only $10). Registration is required to set up in the tailgate lot and tickets are required to attend The Steel Wheels concert (go to the EMU Box Office).

More information on these events and the entire weekend can be found at

Discussion on “Saturday afternoon at Centennial Homecoming and Family Weekend is packed with special events

    1. The Affinity Drop-ins are Saturday, 1-3 p.m., at various locations around campus. The Riverside Hospital School of Nursing (via the EMC program) drop-in will be in the
      Campus Center, 301 & 302. Please visit for more affinity groups and locations.

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