Tuesday, September 11, 2007
OU family celebrates 50th anniversary
The extended OU family gathered in the Oakland Center Friday, September 7, for an evening filled with fun, food and festivities to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the university and meet the new Grizz mascot.
|The “old” Grizz mascot made a final appearance and accepted a diploma from Mary Beth Snyder, vice president for Student Affairs. (Photo courtesy of Rick Smith)|
With a rousing welcome by the OU pep band and the OU dance team, Images, Gary Russi, president and Mary Beth Snyder, vice president for Student Affairs, addressed 2,400 faculty and staff and their families, retirees, friends and student-athletes from many of the Golden Grizzlies teams.
“It is all of you who contribute to the fabric of our institution, who we are, what we stand for and to what heights we will aspire. We have made our name and identity known in the marketplace both near and far. We’re no longer confused with other institutions with ‘Oakland’ in their name,” Russi said, the room erupting in applause. “And, our reputation for academic quality, research success, cultural and community engagement and athletic success is no longer a secret. The word is out. OU is a contender in Oakland County, the state, the region and beyond.”
The “old” Grizz mascot made a final appearance and accepted a diploma from Snyder. As he left the stage, Snyder said, “He’s making his way back to the bear lair to join the ranks of former hot-shot mascots.”
With the sounds of a grizzly bear roaring in the background, the new Grizz tore through a paper barricade and was welcomed by Snyder. “We’re still the Golden Grizzlies, but there’s a new kid about to set foot on campus, a meaner, leaner, but really good looking, new freshman Grizz mascot,” she said. “We hope that your presence on campus brings lots of fun and laughter to the students.”
|With the sounds of a grizzly bear roaring in the background, the new Grizz tore through a paper barricade and was welcomed by the crowd. (Photo courtesy of Rick Smith)|
After a buffet dinner, attendees were treated to a magic show, caricature artists, face painting, henna artists and games. The fun was interrupted for a few minutes when a tornado warning was issued for the area. Guests were asked to remain on the lower level of the Oakland Center until the warning expired.
Karen Meyer, administrative secretary for political science, enjoyed the 50th anniversary photos and displays. “I was looking at the historical pictures and was impressed. It’s important to recognize history and traditions,” she said. “I was happy to see the big turnout. I haven’t seen that much excitement in the Oakland Center in a long time. People set aside their discretionary time and came back with their families. It was great to see so many retirees, too.”
Gift bags were distributed to each guest, and dozens of door prizes were awarded. Door prizes winners are available here. If you haven’t claimed your prize yet, please pick it up at the Office of the President, 204 Wilson Hall.