Out With A Bang: Celebrate Armstrong Wraps Up With Food, Fun and Fireworks
(Oct. 29, 2013) Armstrong's first ever Celebrate Armstrong weekend went out with a bang! As fireworks lit up the sky over campus, it marked the end of the Celebrate Armstrong Finale and the beginning of a tradition that students, alumni, faculty, and staff will be able to share with each other and the community for many years to come.
The weekend kicked off on Thursday, Oct. 24, with the Celebrate Armstrong Festival. More than 80 Armstrong departments, clubs, and organizations took over campus with over 70 different interactive booths that engaged festival attendees at every turn.
“I liked the henna tattoos and all of the food,” said Armstrong freshman Megan Andrews. “I can't wait until next year!”
The lawn next to Burnett Hall was bustling with festival goers riding the mechanical bull, climbing to the top of the giant rock wall, smashing an old car with a sledge hammer, playing Twister, filling up on hot dogs, and so much more.
“The food and the interaction of students to form a community was my highlight,” said Armstrong junior Chelsea Alexander. “I like how it was well organized.”
The festival fun flooded over into the evening with the John Cassidy Magic Show in the Student Union. Cassidy, a professional comedian, magician, and balloon artist, awed the crowd with his unforgettable performance.
The celebration continued the morning of Friday, Oct. 25, with the Annual Athletics Golf Outing at the Crosswinds Golf Club. The event helped raised funds for 11 of Armstrong's intercollegiate programs. That evening the Pirates kicked off the 2013-2014 basketball season with the annual Pirate Madness that included activities such as the student slam-dunk contest, the Student vs. Faculty/Staff basketball game, and more.
Bright and early on the morning of Saturday, Oct. 26, 400 students, alumni, faculty, and staff gathered on the steps of the Student Union to capture the traditional Treasure Savannah picture. After posing in matching maroon shirts, the crowd left in 13 buses to volunteer at 13 different sites around the Savannah area. Armstrong's Liberty Center also led a clean up crew around the downtown Hinesville area.
“I'm glad that the university does Treasure Savannah,” said Ivy Acero, administrative assistant in the department of nursing. “It's great to get everyone together to help so many people.”
Later that morning, Armstrong's athletic department hosted its second annual Treasure Walk for women's athletics at the Alumni Arena. The walk raised money for the B.J. Ford Athletic Scholarship, which was established last year in honor of the head coach for the inaugural women's basketball and softball teams at Armstrong, B.J. Ford. The walk helped participants work up a good appetite for the Soccer Tailgate that followed in the afternoon. Tailgaters enjoyed music, barbecue, and a giant photo booth. Afterwards, fans enjoyed watching former Pirate softball players match up against the current softball team for the Alumni Softball Game, and then cheered the women's soccer team to victory as they downed Georgia Southwestern State University, 4-0.
The long weekend packed full of fun events and activities came to a close on Saturday evening with the Celebrate Armstrong Finale. Lawn chairs and blankets took over the lawn by the campus quad as attendees listened and danced to Suckerpunch and feasted on a good, old-fashioned low country boil.
“I brought my sister to spend time with her because I haven't seen her since I moved here for college,” said Armstrong freshmen Kaydranna Padgett.
Kaydranna's 14-year-old sister Brittany really enjoyed the experience of being on a college campus. First semester Armstrong student Juan Acosta brought his wife Angela, their two children and two of their friends.
“We really wanted to see the fireworks,” said Angela. “I would like to come back every year.”
It was the perfect end to the perfect weekend that celebrated Armstrong's rich history and even started some new traditions.