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Alumni renew ties to College and one another amid food, football, and more

With sun-splashed skies, moderate temperatures, and stunning foliage decorating the campus, Saturday served up an ideal day for football and a whole lot more as Lafayette celebrated another great Homecoming weekend.

A busy schedule was capped off Saturday afternoon by the football game against Fordham, in which the Leopards came up a bit short.

But that didn’t stop the more than 500 alumni, family members, and friends from making the best of it.

“We’ve been to Homecoming several times before. We try to get to a couple games a year,” said John Thomas ’70, who attended with his wife Nancy, who became a big fan of attending Lafayette events when their daughter, Christine Thomas ’01, was in school. “We love the facilities here.”

For the Thomases and others, the day had much to offer.

There was face-painting for kids and tailgating for the older folks. The remarkable exhibit “A Son and His Adoptive Father: The Marquis de Lafayette and George Washington” was open at the Williams Center for the Arts.

The Williams Center also featured a landscape painting exhibition, and campus tours were available throughout the day. In Oechsle Hall, “Close Encounters with Birds of Prey” enthralled more than 50 alumni and their children.

Bill Streeter ’74 from the Delaware Valley Raptor Center gave a fascinating presentation that included live displays of falcons, owls, a hawk, and a golden eagle.

“It was terrific,” said John Rue, a Fordham alum who attended Homecoming with his brother, Dave Rue ’82. “He was very compelling, extremely informative.”

And there was the food.

Lafayette food service personnel put out a scrumptious spread that included hot dogs, barbecue, pierogies, salad, clam chowder, and the main course of the day, steamed clams, followed by dessert.

“This was really something. I never even thought before about coming to the tailgate,” said Peter Fagan ’69. “It’s a great deal.”

The day wasn’t all about food and football, though.

For Tom Grimm ’61, it served as an opportunity to take in the myriad improvements made across the campus over the past several years.

“It’s just stunning. This is a fantastic physical plant,” he said. “I think the place is ready to go to the next level.”

Elsewhere around the festivities, many alumni and their families simply enjoyed the chance to listen to the three-part a cappella harmonies of the male Chorduroys and the ladies of Cadence.

“We have our concerts every year but we really enjoy performing here,” said Cadence soloist Hannah Schoor ’08.

Taking in the various activities was a new experience for some. For the Dimmick family, not so much.

“This is the annual meeting of the clan,” said Paul Dimmick ’71, who came to campus to see son Peter Dimmick ’08. “Homecoming is Homecoming, and it’s good to be here.”

Joining them was Paul’s mother, Ruth, whose husband, Byron Dimmick ’33, was the first generation of the family to attend Lafayette. The family also includes Paul’s brother Gary Dimmick ’73.

For those not so familiar with Homecoming, the experience was special.

“We’ve never been back for Homecoming,” said Chris Sylvia, wife of Albert Sylvia ’71. “We’re going to the game, and we can’t wait.”

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