This weekend hundreds of families traveled to Pittsburg to celebrate PSU’s Family Day with their Gorilla family members.
On Saturday, Sept. 25, Pittsburg State held their annual Family Day, a day that consists of many family-oriented activities all leading up to the Saturday night football game.
“It is a long-standing tradition that we designate one Saturday each fall as Family Day.,” said PSU President Steve Scott. “It’s timed several weeks into the semester and aligned with a home football game so that families feel welcome to return to campus to ‘check-in’ on their kids. The parents seem to really enjoy this opportunity. And from what I’ve seen over the years, so do the students.”
Family Day is an event that involves Gorillas of all ages each year.
“Family Day is so important at Pitt State because most of us who work here and attended here look at PSU as a large family,” said Jon Bartlow, director of alumni and constituent relations. “We hear that sentiment time and time again. Family and tradition are a huge part of the history of PSU and this day allows us to celebrate them both. We also know that family support is incredibly important in college as well. College can be difficult and this day allows us to celebrate the support we get from our families.”
Opportunities presented to families included Donuts at the Bookstore, family activities planned by the Campus Activities Center, President’s Lunch at the Overman Student Center, Loteria, and GorillaFest in Gorilla Village. Family day started at 10 a.m and continued through the football game that evening.
“The day was full of activities for me, including a lunch for parents, a visit with our alumni board, hosting a dinner, attending the football game, doing a halftime TV interview..,” Scott said. “It was a great day, but my favorite part is always, always meeting parents. I was able to meet a number of them at the luncheon. They were all so supportive of our efforts and were so impressed with this place we call Pittsburg State University.”
The most well-attended part of Family Day was GorillaFest, a 3-hour tailgate that lead up to the football game.
“We had close to a record crowd at the football game with 10,600 people which is several thousand more than the game a few weeks ago,” Bartlow said. “Based on the looks of tailgating and GorillaFest we had a near record crowd.”
The parking lots closest to the Carnie Smith Stadium were populated by people eating, drinking, listening to music, playing lawn games and celebrating Pitt State. There was free food, inflatables, PSU tattoos, balloon animals, and crimson and gold pom-poms available to all tailgaters.
“We heard from Barstool Sports that Pitt State has the best college tailgate scene in Kansas and it is living up to that expectation,” said Jason Gallaway, senior in construction management, whose parents came to visit. “I think it’s pretty important for the families to come together around their kids going to college and to celebrate their community.”