Bethany Graduates Return to Alma Mater for Alumni Weekend Celebrations

BETHANY, W.Va. — Bethany College hosted its 2009 Alumni Weekend May 1-3. The event featured class reunion events, the Bethany football program’s Bison Golf Classic and activities hosted by the Bethany Alumni Soccer Association (BASA).

6343Thumb1232.jpgBethanians returned to Bethany’s historic campus for the alumni activities. Participants included members of the class of 1959 who celebrated their 50-year reunion. Reunion events culminated with the Scroll Society Breakfast on May 3. Held to honor the members of the class of 1959, the breakfast is open annually to all alumni who have celebrated their 50th reunion.

May 2 activities included the 62nd Annual Darline Nicholson May Morning Breakfast. Presented by the Panhellenic Council and the Division of Campus Life, the event includes all women on the College faculty, staff and student body, along with invited guests. It was established to honor senior women at the end of the school year.

Kelly C. Sofka, Bethany’s 2009 Outstanding Junior Woman, led a toast to the seniors. Veronica Jae of West Mifflin, Pa., was presented with this year’s Aleece C. Gresham Leadership Award. This prize is given to a senior woman who has exhibited sound academic accomplishment, participated in and displayed leadership in a variety of co-curricular activities and shown dedication and commitment to the College. Jae is a French and International Relations major.

Dr. Keely Camden, Associate Professor of Education and Chair of the Department of Education received the Joyce Chernenko Outstanding Advisor Award. This award is presented annually at the Darline Nicholson May Morning Breakfast by the Panhellenic Council. The award is given in honor of dedicated service to Bethany College, to a woman who fosters growth in the women of the College by helping them to better themselves and the community and who serves as a positive role model to all women on campus.

44302320.jpgAnother weekend highlight was the Bethany football team’s 2009 Bison Golf Classic, held on May 2 at Highland Springs golf course in Wellsburg, W.Va. More than 90 golfers participated in the outing. Proceeds will benefit the Bethany football program. A team of four, sponsored for the second consecutive year by Meeks Directional Services, won with 14 under par and donated their cash prize of $400 back to the program. Event participants included alumni of the College and friends of the program, corporate partners, the coaching staff and parents of some current players.

WKKX radio in Wheeling broadcast its Saturday Sports Huddle show live from the outing. Host Steve Novotney spent time on the air with Head Football Coach Tim Weaver, Men’s Basketball Coach Mike Summey and Bethany President Dr. Scott D. Miller. A buffet dinner, raffle and awards presentation at Bubba’s Bison Inn in Bethany followed the Bison Golf Classic.

9589group.jpgBASA’s Star of Honor Reception on May 2 recognized teams from 1967-1970 for advancing the 1967 Soccer Club to Varsity status in 1968 and for providing a solid foundation for the men’s soccer program. In attendance from the program’s early years were: Armand Mazie ’69, Glenn Kelly ’69, Amos Acree ’69, Stelios Papadopoulos ’70, Frank Gomez ’70, Doug Hottel ’71, Joe Studick ’71, Rich Siconolfi ’72, Fred Borg ’73 and Doug Cairns ’73. The 10 men were inducted into the Star of Honor as BASA paused to pay tribute to all of the players who participated from 1967-1970.

Memorial moments were also taken to remember David “Fuzzy” Williams, Lance Tacke, Bill Lightbody, Matt Amon, and Rick Tardiff. Their contributions to Bethany Soccer continue to be honored with the establishment of the David R. Williams Endowment to support Bethany Soccer and Bethany College.

Maggie Kuhn, Assistant Women’s Soccer Coach, was inducted into the Star of Honor for her contributions to the women’s soccer program as a player and coach. Frank Calabrese ‘70, a long-time supporter of Bison soccer who was instrumental in securing the College’s soccer complex property, was also inducted.

Other BASA events included an alumni soccer tournament. Former Men’s Head Soccer Coach and BASA President Paul “Ace” Hayward coordinated the activities and helped welcome Sean Regan as the New Men’s Head Soccer Coach and Barry Christmas, who also serves as Bethany’s Assistant Professor of Physical Education and Sports Studies, as the Women’s Head Soccer Coach. Both coaches invited the support of Bethany alumni in recruitment and fundraising efforts.

Alumni Weekend activities also included campus tours, an Alumni Association Luncheon, a showing of the 1950’s movie “Some Like it Hot,” an evening of ghost stories with Larry Grimes—Perry E. and Aleece C. Gresham Chair in Humanities, Professor of English and Chair of the Department of Literature and Language and an Open House at Christman Manor at Pendleton Heights hosted by President and Mrs. Miller.

In addition to the class of 1959, the classes of 1939, 1944, 1949, 1954, 1964, 1969 and 1974 also celebrated reunions.