Ivy Leaf - Fall 2004
Celebrating 65 Years of Penn State Altoona
There was an air of excitement at Penn State Altoona on June 5th, and music could be heard in the neighborhood all day. It was a celebration of the College's 65th anniversary and, from the youngest Lion fan to those who could remember back to the days of "Bathouse U", celebrate they did.
The theme was "Jazz with a Pennsylvania Twist" and the celebration boasted an impressive day-long tribute to Pennsylvania's role in the history of jazz. Despite a surprisingly cold June day, attendance was high at the afternoon concerts and the cold did nothing to diminish the crowd's enjoyment of free Creamery ice cream.
Free and open to the public, the afternoon included a battle of the high school bands, featuring performances by the Altoona, Hollidaysburg, and Tyrone high school jazz bands. The Penn State Altoona "almost alumni" jazz band, a group of predominantly Penn State Altoona graduates, also entertained the crowd. The afternoon culminated with a performance by celebrated local group the Arthur Goldstein Quartet.
The capstone event for this anniversary celebration was the evening's formal gala. Beginning with dinner under a grand tent, warmed by the last minute rental of space heaters, the guests then adjourned to the Community Arts Center theatre. The Fairfield Four, Grammy-winning Warner Brothers recording artists for the film O, Brother, Where Art Thou and Doc Gibbs and Picante, eastern Pennsylvania's leading Latino jazz performer and house band for the Emeril Live! cooking show, entertained the crowd until close to midnight.
The evening's gala served as a fundraising event for the College's Advisory Board (see story p. 6). But it also importantly served as a wonderful way to highlight a day of celebration for the 65 years of incredible success that Penn State Altoona has achieved.