Spectacular weather, meaningful events, and wonderful interactions between Belhaven alumni were the highlights of Back to Belhaven – Homecoming 2009! When the curtains closed on the final event of the weekend, more than 350 individuals participated in the festivities across campus.
“I enjoyed myself greatly during the weekend,” expressed Sara Smith T, a member of the Class of ’89. “I was so very impressed with the state of my alma mater. The campus looked wonderful, the students were friendly and helpful, and it was great to be with all the dear faculty who were such blessings in my life.”pectacular weather, meaningful events, and wonderful interactions between Belhaven alumni were the highlights of Back to Belhaven – Homecoming 2009! When the curtains closed on the final event of the weekend, more than 350 individuals participated in the festivities across campus.
Homecoming events kicked off on Thursday, November 5, with the Blazer Volleyball team squaring off against conference foe, the University of Mobile, in the Rugg Arena. The annual Homecoming Dance continued its recent tradition of being held on Thursday, as the student body ventured out to Reservoir Pointe in Ridgeland to eat, fellowship, and dance, dance, dance.
Friday, November 6 was full of activity from the beginning, as the Office of Admission conducted its “Discover Day” program for prospective students and their families. After alumni checked in at registration, they were welcomed at the Alumni Reunion Reception in the McCravey-Triplett Student Center commons. From the general reception, individuals from the classes of 1959, 1969, and 1999 branched off for special gatherings at various locations.
The highlight event for Friday evening was the “Thirty Years of Excellence” Celebration honoring Dr. Al Chestnut and Dr. Phil Kelly for their thirty years of teaching service in the Belhaven Science Department. (See page 14 for recap)
More than 120 people attended the 17th Annual Belhaven College Sports Hall of Fame Banquet on Friday evening in the H.C. Bailey Dining Commons. The five new members inducted into the Hall this year were: Mrs. Wanda McDonald Gatlin, ’99 (Women’s Basketball); Mrs. Leanne Smith Henderson, ’02 (Women’s Soccer); Mr. Patrick Fitzgerald, ’88 (Men’s Soccer); Mr. Orley Hood, ’71 (Sports Information/Manager); and Mr. Danny Lewis, ’81 (Men’s Basketball).
The 4th Annual Belhaven Homecoming 5k Run/Walk took place first thing Saturday morning, November 7. Participants enjoyed spectacular weather as they either ran or walked the 3.1 mile course that rolled throughout the Belhaven neighborhood. Both male and female champions were crowned, with the winning times being a little more than 18 minutes and just short of 20 minutes, respectively.
A crowd of nearly 130 people was present for the Alumni Awards Luncheon, honoring Belhaven alumni for their outstanding achievements in the arenas of business, church ministry, community service, and education. This year’s recipients were: Mr. Mark J. Windham, ’77 (Alumnus of the Year); Mr. Grant Callen, ’05 (Young Alumnus of the Year); Mrs. Erma Driver, ’04 (Community Service Award); Mrs. Peggy Skattebo, ’78 (Church Service Award); Mrs. Beverly Weathersby, ’78 (Bettye Quinn Education Award); and Mr. John Eichelberger, ’76 (Jim Park Business Award). In addition to hearing from each of the recipients, attendees were witness to the induction of the newest members into the Fifty Year Club from the Class of ’59.
The Blazer Football team got caught up in a shootout with Mid-South Conference foe Shorter College. Unfortunately, the Blazers could not pull out the victory, falling by a score of 55-42. At halftime of the game, Mr. Alex Freel and Miss Madison Childs were crowned the 2009 Homecoming King and Queen.
Saturday evening the Belhaven String Chamber Orchestra presented “The Landing,” by Belhaven’s Dr. Andrew Sauerwein in the Concert Hall of the Center for the Arts. All those who attended enjoyed featured performances by the Belhaven College and Jackson Community Symphony Orchestras. Additionally, the Blazer Men’s Basketball team defeated the Pensacola Christian College Eagles by a score of 86-64, and improved to 3-0 on the season. —MD