Marquette community discusses university’s own holiday

Marquette+community+discusses+universitys+own+holiday

Decked out in blue and gold singing Ring Out Ahoya, Marquette students, faculty, alums and fans celebrated the 30th annual National Marquette Day Feb. 26. 

But what exactly is National Marquette Day?

National Marquette Day brings the Marquette community together in pride and spirit to honor the values the university cherishes throughout the year. 

Marquette celebrated “Spirit Day” every year dating back to the 1960s, before it officially became known as “National Marquette Day” in 1992. 

The purpose of the annual tradition is to unite the Marquette community from all over the globe in celebration of who we are as an institution and to exemplify the saying “we are Marquette.”

“It’s about family and being connected,” Marc Whitney, an adjunct professor in the College of Communication and a two-time Marquette graduate, said. 

This year, students had the chance to make DIY gameday gear the night before the game at the Alumni Memorial Union ballrooms. The Commons dining hall hosted a brunch party Saturday morning with a photo booth, a DJ and giveaways as well as a game-watching party at 12 p.m.

Along with the Marquette vs. Butler men’s basketball game at Fiserv Forum, there were events throughout Milwaukee including a pep rally and brunch at Mecca Bar and Grill and a Marquette Young Alumni Association pregame celebration at RWB Milwaukee. 

Marquette men’s basketball played to a sold-out crowd at Fiserv Forum, bringing fans in from all over. The Marquette community stretches beyond Milwaukee though because there were even game-watching parties for Marquette alums around the world from places like San Francisco all the way to London. 

“Attending the game with 17,000 other folks is great, but the best memories for me are from the few years my wife (another MU grad) and I lived in Colorado. National Marquette Day was a chance to get together with other MU alums 1,000 miles from campus and remember why ‘We Are Marquette’ is so meaningful,” Whitney said.

For alums like Whitney and DeAnna Radaj, ‘86 Marquette alum, National Marquette Day is a day to “relish in the Marquette community.”

“National Marquette Day means, to me, a celebration of our shared success, service and pride being part of the MU family. It’s a coming together for us to remember all who’ve helped shape our lives and who we’ve become as leaders in our chosen profession, community and family,” Radaj said.

Nick Howard, a senior in the College of Arts & Sciences, said that the best part of National Marquette Day is how it brings generations together.

“My favorite part of National Marquette Day is the game itself, being jam-packed for a usually super intense game is electrifying, and having so many generations of Marquette fans coming together really emphasizes our community, which I really appreciate,” Howard said. 

Many first-years, like Anna Ring, a first-year student in the College of Nursing, held high expectations for their first National Marquette Day.

“As a freshman at Marquette University, I expect National Marquette Day to be one of the biggest events of the year,” Ring said. “I expect me and all my friends to go out and have a great time before, during and after the game.”

The 30th annual National Marquette Day celebration brought generations of the Marquette community together for a weekend to celebrate both the university and a men’s basketball win.

This story was written by Bailey Striepling. She can be reached at bailey.striepling@marquette.edu.