Starting Friday and for the next two weeks, alumni will travel to Hanover from around the girdled earth to celebrate connections and classmates at the College on the Hill.
From twelve alumni classes representing six decades of Dartmouth graduates, more than 4,000 people have registered to return for 2013 Dartmouth Reunions, which run from June 7–16.
"We're thrilled to welcome so many sons and daughters of Dartmouth back home," says Martha Beattie '76, who leads her second year of Dartmouth Reunions as vice president for Alumni Relations. "It's really a testament to the magic of this place and the everlasting affection we feel for it."
The devotion to Dartmouth transcends generations. A whopping 557 members of the Class of 2008—more than 50 percent—are expected for their 5th Reunion, while 294 members of the Class of 1963—more than 40 percent of the class—are expected for their 50th Reunion. Both are potential attendance records. In keeping with tradition for the 50th Reunion class, the '63s will march in Commencement on Sunday, June 9.
Many alumni with children are returning. Celebrating their 25th Reunion, 427 members of the Class of 1988 and their family members—totaling about 800 people—plan to return. Overall, nine Reunion attendance records may be broken, including the total number of alumni returning.
For the second year in a row there will be "On the Green!" afternoon and evening events for all alumni reunion classes. Acts from the Big Apple Circus—founded by Paul Binder '63— as well as the Blues Brothers Revue and the Dartmouth Aires will perform, followed by fireworks.
The head of her class Reunion committee, Stephanie Welsch-Lewin '88 (mother of Aaron Lewin '17) says the only planning step she hasn't taken yet is to check the weather. "I can't do it," she says. "It's the only thing I can’t do anything about."
Lewin, who is in Washington, D.C., says '88s are traveling to Reunions from as far away as Australia and the Far East. "I'm proud and grateful that so many of my classmates have made the time so we have this opportunity to be together," she says.