A Weekend That Never Disappoints: Black and Gold

Image of the Class of 2026, surrounded by family and faculty, on the stairs of the Arch (Photo courtesy of @wooinsider)
Sara Wesolek, Contributing Writer
Emilie Eustace, Features Editor

The sun shone, bagpipes blared and a community gathered. This past weekend, the Wooster campus was full of alumni, parents and families during the annual Black and Gold Weekend festivities. This is always an incredible time for members of The College of Wooster community to gather together and reflect on old memories while making new ones. The festivities this year included a chorus concert, many athletic events, different presentations by APEX and the college administration, networking and happy hours galore. 

The weekend got off to a great start with a performance on Friday by the Wooster Chorus, directed by Dr. Lisa Wong. The theme of the performance was mental healing and growth, and the five songs the choir performed filled the audience with a sense of renewal. In between songs, Dr. Wong said the choir practiced for a mere three weeks prior to the concert. Their mastery of the music was impressive, and every member should be proud of their performance. Much of the audience was brought to tears at some point during the concert. The songs beautifully followed the theme of healing, a perfect transition from the work week to Black and Gold Weekend. 

The choir ended their performance with “Dwell in the House.” The song is a classic for the Wooster Chorus, and it was evident the chorus alumni in attendance appreciated the song by the collective gasp when the song was announced. The chorus exited the stage as a group when they finished, signaling the end of the concert and the beginning of a great weekend. 

On Sunday morning, the Class of 2026 eagerly gathered on the steps of Kauke facing the Oak Grove for a class picture. Families joined to watch and listen as Interim President Wayne Webster and Dr. Lisa Perfetti, provost and professor of French and Francophone Studies, gave welcoming speeches to all in attendance. 

Then, the Wooster Pipe Band led the students through the Arch to the President’s house, one of the many traditions the class of 2026 will experience. This tradition represents first-years entering a new chapter of their lives. While they may be leaving loved ones behind, they are not alone in their journey. They have fellow first-years, staff and an entire community of students to support them. When they graduate, they will walk back through the Arch into the Oak Grove where every graduating class plants a tree. The march back through Kauke represents the graduates joining the alumni network. 

Rachel Applebaum ’26 commented that the march made her excited for her first year at Wooster and the other traditions, such as filling the Arch with snow. She said the march solidified her sense of belonging in the College. Although there were initially sad reactions to the march being postponed from move-in weekend, the sunshine on Sunday made up for it. It was a high-spirited beginning to the year.

The weekend was so jam-packed that it was impossible to attend every event offered. Black and Gold is always a beaming time on campus. As we are still amidst the pandemic, it is great to see students from previous years have the opportunity to take a break from their everyday lives and relive some of the best parts of their college days. Seeing alumni reminisce, bond and develop relationships with one another and with current students reminds everyone of the community fostered at Wooster.

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