The day started with visitors hitchin' a ride in one of the many "Sammy's Shuttle" golf carts transporting families from the parking lot to the center of campus where the welcome tent was located.  At the welcome tent they were greeted by the smiling faces of volunteers, student ambassadors, and Kirkwood staff as they received a blue Kirkwood reusable grocery bag filled with goodies. 



Kirkwood welcomed nearly a thousand students, parents, siblings, grandparents, and alumni for the third annual Kirkwood Family Day events on Saturday October 3rd, 2009.  Despite the cold, dreary, and sometimes rainy weather there was a great turnout. Months of planning came together as the campus had more than twenty-six activities and demonstrations packed in the day for campus visitors to take in.


Kirkwood's C-store, our on-campus convenience store, gave away free Starbucks coffee all day to help everyone warm up.The Kirkwood Bookstore had its annual Family Day Sale which included plenty of warm sweatshirts, coats, hats, mittens, blankets, and more as the cold weather came to Iowa early.


One of these stuffers included a chance to win a night's stay in The Hotel at Kirkwood Center.


The day's events started at 10:00am with registrations at the welcome tent where all students were given a blue Kirkwood t-shirt. Parents also received a "Kirkwood Parent" t-shirt. 

There was also a prize tent where students and parents could claim their prizes.  Prize winners were selected from online Family Day early-registrations and families were called to pick up one of 200 prizes.  Prizes included Kirkwood blankets, umbrellas, and coolers.


Close to 50 students volunteered at Family Day from various student clubs and groups such as Student Ambassadors, KAPS, the Eagles' Nest, Student Senate, and Phi Theta Kappa.


At 10:30 Kirkwood President Mick Starcevich gave a welcome speech to a large crowd. President Starcevich spoke about some of the many projects on campus with the addition of Cedar Hall, Jones Hall, the Equestrian Center, and the Hotel at Kirkwood.Kirkwood is also very proud to have the lowest tuition in the state of Iowa at $111 per credit hour.  Students at Kirkwood are exempt from paying any student fees such as a technology fee, Recreational Center fee, parking fee, tutoring fee, and activities fee. 

From 10:45 to 12 p.m. the campus was alive with campus tours, hayrack rides, informational sessions, and many live demonstrations.

Jody Donaldson, Scholarship & Alumni Director, organized a tent full of information for returning alumni.Events centered on the Bookstore, Benton Hall/Iowa Hall areas, with other demonstrations and visits in Linn, Johnson and Jones halls. In Jones Hall the Industrial Technology programs demonstrated the creation of the "Kirkwood" medallion. 

Dave Stotelmyer, faculty in Kirkwood's CNC Machining program invited many guests over throughout the day.  Overall he was proud to show off Kirkwood's facilities and the program. 


Kirkwood's Animal Health Programs hosted their annual open house. The program welcomed well over one hundred people. Refreshments were also available for the day's visitors.

The day started with students welcoming families and giving tours of the facility and talking about their programs. Dogs were out frequently so families could interact with the animals that the students work with daily.There were demonstrations about the programs and technology. 

A special Rapture demonstration was given by Luke Hart about owls and their habitat. Over fifty students in the kennel management program were showing off the dogs that they had trained so far this year. Groups of students put together special PowerPoints that were playing continuously all day with pictures from their experiences in Kirkwood's programs. A sound auction raised close to $2,000 dollars for the Anne M. Konrardy Memorial Scholarship fund.  Anne Konrardy was a 1994 graduate of the Vet Tech program. This is a yearly event that takes place at the Open House. (Pictured top left: Sammy the Eagle made an appearance to welcome families to campus.  Left: Luke Hart's special Rapture Presentation on owls.)


The day was filled with games such as the Kirkwood bean bag toss, golf challenge, baseball throw, and a kiddie bounce house.


Third generation Kirkwood student from South Dakota takes a few chances at the baseball toss.  She was joined by her mother, Nursing alum, and three other family members. 


Due to popular demand last year, we offered hayrack tours of the central/south campus, guided by retired Ag Science Dean Jerry Bolton, Jon Weih from the Iowa City Campus, and Steve Carpenter in Marketing. The crews counted 13 rack-loads of visitors who braved the chill to see our new facilities and spacious grounds. Families came from all over the state, including three generations from Sioux City and several groups from the Des Moines, Quad Cities and Marshalltown areas.


Culinary Arts students also wowed the crowd with ice carving demonstrations.  Ice carvings of an eagle and a jack-o-lantern were demonstrated between 10:30 and noon. Many visitors lingered around the demonstration as Dave Dettman, culinary arts professor, and students went step-by-step through the ice carving process. Right: Sammy the Eagle and a future eagle posing next to the finished ice sculptures. Below: Kirkwood culinary arts students polish off the first of the two ice carvings. 


Iowa Hall was packed with activities including the new student athletic section Eagles' Nest sign-up, free popcorn, the Disney Internship program, and information about the Campus Nurse.

Also included was information from Student Development.  Danielle Ebaugh, Career Services Coordinator, and counselors Wendy Lingo and Mary Geising were available to answer questions about the services offered on campus. 

The Kirkwood Art Gallery was open with artwork from Gary Hootman.  Gary's theme was "Contemporary Ceramics: From the Craft to Art" on display.

Parents and students could load money on to their student ID, the EagleCard, in the Eagle Card office between 9am-1pm. Students are able to use their eagle card to purchase meal plans, at vending machines all over campus, and off campus at various businesses.

More popular was the free caricatures by "Big Mike."  There was a steady line of excited visitors waiting to take a piece of "artwork" home to remember the day by.


The event was catered by Hy-Vee and food was served starting at 11:00am.  Kirkwood staff, faculty and students helped serve burgers, brats, hot dogs, chips, a cookie, and beverages. 

The Cedar Rapids Visitors Bureau was also in attendance and handed out hundreds of brochures to students and their families about the area. 

Above: Kirkwood's Public Information Service Director, Steve Carpenter gets a quick shot with a "future Eagle" on a hayrack ride.




The Kirkwood Athletics Department had a few of the many trophies displayed from their recent success. Pictured are sophomores Alyssa and Kasey joined with Assistant women's basketball coach, Jen Francescon handing out posters and schedules for home athletic events. As many Family Day activities were winding down the athletic teams were just getting started.  At 1:00pm the three-time defending National Champion women's basketball team along with the Regional Champion men's basketball team held scrimmages in Johnson Hall. 


The party continued out on the diamonds into the afternoon as 35 Kirkwood Eagles Baseball alumni came back to campus for a reunion game and home run derby. Pictured is Kirkwood baseball alumni that attended the day's events. “That was a great time. Those guys were laughing and joking the whole game! It looked like a big success on the field,” Doug Bannon, Dean of Admissions added.