October events in Socorro continue this weekend with New Mexico Tech’s 49ers Weekend, celebrating the 128th anniversary of the founding of the School of Mines in 1889. The annual 49ers Celebration – New Mexico Tech’s homecoming – features a weekend full of fun activities on campus and around town today through Sunday.
Besides the Saturday parade down California Street and golf tournament on Friday, there are several other activities open for the general public.
According to organizers, 49ers Weekend is a School of Mines tradition in Socorro going back to at least the late 1930's.
The five-day celebration focuses on activities primarily for returning alumni and current students, but there are a few events open to the public. Homecoming activities began on Wednesday and will wrap up Sunday.
On Thursday at noon Tech students can compete to win Xbox’s and other prizes in the Milk Chugging Contest, Donut Eating Contest, Pie Eating Contest or Jell-O Wrestling.
The celebration is in full swing by Thursday afternoon with the opening tailgate party, live music, and food at Macey Center.
Socorro loves its parades, and this weekend Tech students get their turn again by hosting the 49ers Parade. The parade’s theme is “Masquerade” and features entries from civic groups, organizations, and businesses both local and statewide.
This year the Grand Marshal of the parade is 49th District Representative Gail Armstrong.
The parade begins at 11 a.m. at Sedillo Park and finishes at the plaza, where cash awards of $500, $300 and $200 will be given out for the best community entries.
For the industrious - and physically fit - the ‘M’ Mountain Run to “Paint the M” is Friday morning. It’s time once again to spruce up one of the iconic symbols of not only New Mexico Tech but the Socorro landscape, the ‘M’ on Socorro Peak. Participants are to meet in the parking lot between the gold course and Facilities Management at 7 a.m.
The first 50 students to reach the M with a bag of lime will get cash prizes and all participants will be treated to lunch at the top of the mountain. The hike is about 2.5 miles and a rise of 2,000 feet over rugged terrain.
“Painting the ‘M’ is much like going to school at Tech – it’s difficult, but worth the effort. Every student should experience this at least once during their career here,” said Van Romero, Vice President of Research and a graduate of New Mexico Tech. “It’s a great tradition.”
Anyone 18 and older, including the general public, may take part in the run, but to qualify for a prize, the participant must be enrolled as a New Mexico Tech student in good standing. Registration deadline is noon today. Email email@example.com to register.
At 4:30 p.m. Friday, the current Pygmies take on the “Ancestors” in the Black and Blue Rugby Match on the Tech Athletic Field. Following the parade on Saturday is the annual soccer game pitting the current Miners against Miners alumni at 2 p.m. on the athletic field.
Also on Friday is the annual Victor J. Saracini Memorial Scholarship fundraiser, hosted by the Alumni Association at the Garcia Opera House, one of Socorro’s most historic buildings. All alumni, their friends, and students with valid IDs are invited. Special Guests are members of the class of 1989. Free food and drinks for 21-and-over. Social hour is 5 to 6 p.m. with live music until 9 p.m. Donations to the Victor J. Saracini Memorial Scholarship fund are welcome. Victor Saracini was a Tech graduate who was one of the pilots who died in the 9/11 attacks.
Other highlights of the annual event include the alumni vs. students rugby match, the Capitol Bar: Old Habits Die Hard, and From Austin, Texas, the Boxcar Preachers. Casino night. The festivities continue throughout the weekend, with student events, alumni gatherings and other activities around campus and Socorro.
The full schedule:
Thursday, October 19
The annual homecoming celebration for Techies
Noon - 25th and 50th class reunions luncheon at Macey Center
5 p.m. - Tailgate party at Macey Center parking lot. Appetizers and cash bar. Music from 1967 and 1992
7:30 p.m. - Belly Dancing at Macey Center
8 p.m. - Comedy Night featuring Hailey Boyle
9 p.m. - Live music featuring Old Habits Die Hard and The Boxcar Preachers from Austin, Texas
Friday, October 20
Tech's annual homecoming festivities continue.
7 a.m. - Paint the 'M'. Register by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. All students are encouraged to help carry lime up the mountain, or just hike up. Alumni are invited to take a van ride to the top.
8 a.m. - Petroleum Engineering Department's annual Gold Rush Golf Tournament.
2 p.m. - VLA self-guided tours. Alumni are invited to sign up in Fidel Center during registration. Transportation not provided.
3 p.m. - Heritage Events: gold panning, single strike drilling, Swedish sawing contests. Campus Drive next to Driscoll Hall
3 p.m. - Tailgate party hosted by the rugby team
4:30 p.m. - Black and Blue Rugby game. Alumni vs students.
6 p.m. - Alumni reception at the President's home (1 Olive Lane)
6 p.m. - Dave Wheelock Roast and rugby team benefit dinner, Capital Bar
9 p.m. - Decades reunion at the Capital Bar (10, 20, 25, 30, 40, 50 year reunions). Old Habits Die Hard.
Saturday, October 21
11 a.m. - Annual 49ers "Masquerade" Parade. Awards announced at noon on the Plaza.
1 p.m. - Alumni soccer game
3:30 p.m. - Alumni Association board meeting at the Bodega Burger Co.
4 p.m. - Casino Night
5 p.m. - Victor J. Saracini Memorial fund raiser, alumni awards, cocktail party and dinner at the Bodega Burger Co.
8 p.m. - Casino night auction at Macey Center
Sunday, October 22
10 am - Farewell alumni breakfast/brunch at El Camino