Belated birthday celebration: Statewide rolling blackouts and freezing temperatures lead to rescheduled Charter Day
By Jennifer Meers Jones ’08
The cake was bought and decorations were hung, but plans for a university-wide birthday party in honor of the college’s 166th birthday had to be put on hold due to the winter storm which gripped most of the country Wednesday, Feb. 2.
With temperatures dipping into the teens, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas began issuing rolling blackouts that morning to preserve energy and prevent a statewide energy crisis. Much of the campus was affected by these power outages, and the university officially closed at 11 a.m. that day.
Even so, students braved the bitter cold to honor tradition and lay a wreath on Judge Baylor’s grave. All other Charter Day events were postponed until Wednesday, Feb. 16.
Director of Alumni Relations Rebecca O’Baninon said one of her goals when planning for this year’s celebration was to get more students involved and excited about learning about the university’s rich heritage.
Students were invited to visit the alumni center and museum for coffee and a trivia game. Students who completed a quiz about the university’s history and traditions were entered into a drawing for an Xbox 360 Kinect. The winner was announced later that day at the university birthday party.
“Like many other long-standing traditions, Charter Day has evolved throughout the years,” O’Banion said. “It was great to see so many students excited about the 166th birthday of our university.”
Charter Day Trivia answers: Answers to the quiz featured on page 10 of the magazine