April 5, 2010

Calling all alums: Alumni Weekend/Reunion is for you

The Office of Alumni Relations wants the 2010 version of the annual reunion/homecoming weekend to be one giant Johns Hopkins party. The guest list just got a lot bigger.

The April weekend had traditionally been for reunion classes and all Homewood alumni. Taking a cue from President Ronald J. Daniels’ emphasis on “one Johns Hopkins,” the university is opening up the event this year to alumni from all divisions and also the local community.

The retooled event, which runs from April 9 to 11, is now billed as Alumni Weekend/Reunion 2010 and will feature a much-expanded list of events centered around reunion parties, the homecoming lacrosse game and the ever-popular crab cake luncheon.

Some 4,000 people are expected.

Patricia Conklin, senior associate director of the Homewood Reunion Program, said that Alumni Relations wanted to offer a little something for everyone and bring together current students and alumni from campuses other than Homewood.

“This weekend is for the entire Johns Hopkins community and their families,” Conklin said. “We want everyone to come home to Homewood.”

This year’s reunion classes will be the years ending in “0” and “5,” from 1930 to 2005. In addition, alumni of any year currently residing in Maryland and the surrounding states have been invited.

The weekend will feature nearly 80 events including the crab cake luncheon, a bird-watching excursion, walking tours of the campus, music recitals, a lacrosse clinic, an Admissions 101 presentation for alumni with children and a series of “alumni colleges” on such topics as Israel, the future of American business, computational medicine and Spanish food and culture.

On Friday, five Homewood professors will open their classrooms to alumni for lectures. They are Richard Macksey, professor emeritus in the Humanities Center; Greg Ball, professor of psychological and brain sciences and director of the popular neuroscience major; Nicholas P. Jones, the Benjamin T. Rome Dean of the Whiting School and professor of civil engineering; William Sharpe Jr., professor emeritus of mechanical engineering; and Charles “Roger” Westgate, professor of electrical engineering.

President Daniels will give a state-of-the-university address from 11 to noon on Saturday in Hodson Hall auditorium.

A new feature for the weekend will be the Family Tent, whose activities will run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday on the Freshman Quad. The list of free entertainment includes a fire-eater/sword swallower, moon bounce, face painting, game-day sign making, temporary Johns Hopkins tattoos, carnival games, craft activities and a speed gun zone where those of all ages can see how fast they can launch a lacrosse ball, kick a soccer ball or throw a baseball.

A small army of volunteers will be on hand to assist the masses, including 150 students and 150 people from Development and Alumni Relations.

A staple of homecoming and the big draw is the men’s lacrosse game, which this year will pit Johns Hopkins against Albany at 2 p.m. on Homewood Field. The game will be preceded by a student rally at noon and a 50th and 25th reunion classes parade on Homewood Field at 1:30 p.m. Other alumni will meet current students at the AMR buildings and file into the stadium together.

Reunion class post-game parties will be held throughout the evening. The Saturday festivities end with concerts by 1980s cover band Buttsteak and a performance by Ocean Rose, who will rock out to tunes from the 1970s.

On Saturday evening, alumni children ages 5 to 12 can attend Camp Blue Jay in Levering Hall’s Sherwood Room and teenagers can head to the Teen Scene in the building’s lobby.

Sunday’s slate of events begins with the eighth annual JHU Blue Jay 5K Race & Half-Mile Fun Run for juvenile diabetes and also features an alumni trip to Camden Yards to see the Orioles play the Toronto Blue Jays. The weekend ends with the Senior Class Dinner, when the Class of 2010 is welcomed by the Alumni Association.

“We’re going to keep people busy, that’s for sure,” Conklin said.

For a full list of events and to register, go to http://alumni.jhu.edu/reunion.