Come 'Back 2 Bellingham' for a family weekend in May
Spring family weekend will be bigger than ever this year, so it’s worth it to plan early.
Back 2 Bellingham Alumni and Family Weekend May 14 to 16, formerly known as Showtime Family Weekend, will include dozens of events for students, families and alumni.
New Student Services and Family Outreach is working with the Alumni Association to plan the inaugural event. That means in addition to regular family activities such as the annual golf outing, luau, sports and theatrical productions, the campus will be buzzing with reunions, tours and other gatherings.
About 50 different groups on campus are pitching in and holding events that weekend, says Chris Roselli, assistant director of the Alumni Association.
“Since so much of the campus community is partnering together for this weekend, there’s going to be something fun and interesting for everyone,” he says. “Our students have so many special interests that every student has a unique Western experience. That’s one of the things that makes Western so great.”
That experience will be on display May 14 to 16 with a variety of major reunions.
For example, Huxley College of the Environment and Fairhaven College of Interdisciplinary Studies will each hold 40th anniversary celebrations. And reunions are planned in the departments of Theatre, Canadian-American Studies, Human Services, English, Communication Sciences and Disorders and Psychology as well as the MBA program.
The departments’ public events and lectures are a chance for families to get a glimpse of academic life at Western and meet some of their student’s academic mentors, Roselli says.
“It’s a great opportunity for parents to see why Western’s academics are constantly ranked among the highest in the West,” he says.
Faculty members are planning several presentations, including “What English Courses Would You Take?” by English faculty, “The Secret Life of Dinosaurs” by Geology Professor Thor Hansen and “Eyewitness Memory and Identification Accuracy” by Psychology Professor Jennifer Davenport.
And several student organizations are planning reunions that weekend, too, such as the Ethnic Student Center, Resident Advisors, Associated Students board of directors, LGBT students and allies, Lifestyle Advisors, Student Admissions Representatives and more.
There will also be several supervised events planned for 9- to 13-year-olds, including science experiments and recreational activities, so students’ younger siblings can enjoy the weekend, too.
Here are some other family-friendly events to check out:
- Family and Alumni Golf Outing: Join alumni, students, parents and families at a casual golf outing and lunch at North Bellingham Golf Course, with some of the green fees supporting WWU scholarships.
- Planetarium Shows: Washington state’s first fully digital planetarium theatre will offer two shows that weekend: “The Zodiac” and “American Indian Star Lore.” The shows aren’t recommended for children under 8.
- “The Miracle Worker”: WWU Theatre students will perform the classic play about the relationship between Helen Keller, who was deaf and blind, and Anne Sullivan, who helped the child learn to communicate.
- Ridin’ Low in the 3-6-0: The second-largest low-rider show in the Pacific Northwest will be in South Campus.
- Residence Hall Showcase: All residence halls will be open for self-guided viewing.
- Sculpture Garden tour: WWU’s world famous sculpture collection is 50 years old. Learn more about the 29 sculptures throughout our campus.
- Boating and Bagels on Bellingham Bay: Ride on the 65-foot Snow Goose and learn more about Bellingham Bay during a relaxing two-hour cruise.
- Sea Kayaking: Join experienced student guides from WWU’s Outdoor Center. Kayaks and life jackets are included.
- Kayaking and Canoeing at Lakewood: Check out WWU’s recreational retreat on the shores of Lake Whatcom.
- Relay for Life: Every year, more than 2,000 students, staff and faculty walk WWU’s track to raise funds for cancer research and support services.
- Vehicles of the Future: See how students in WWU’s Vehicle Research Institute are building cars that run on alternative fuels, from sunlight to cow manure.