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If there’s one thing we're certain about in 2020, it’s that everything is uncertain. Just ask any corporate advertisement ever (watch this video for a laugh). 

New announcements about fall at Purdue are coming out every day, and it seems like many of our favorite campus activities are being postponed, moved online, or even cancelled altogether. Many universities are cancelling athletics too, meaning we’re likely to miss our favorite tailgates and homecoming in West Lafayette.  

Current Boilermakers may miss out on many of the things we loved about our Purdueexperience. But in the midst of these unfortunate cancellations, we suggest looking back on better days. In remembering our traditions, we reassure ourselves that someday they will return, for us and future generations of Boilermakers to enjoy.  

We’d like to remind you of 4 traditions that made coming back to campus feel like coming home. 

Big Bass Drum 

Known as the "world's largest drum," it stands 10 feet tall on its field carriage and is handled by a crew of four band members with two beaters. The drum draws attention wherever it goes from fans who want their picture taken with the instrument. It still has its original 1921 frame, which is eight feet in diameter and nearly four feet between its two heads. 

 

Grand Prix 

This 50-mile, 160-lap go-kart race is "The Greatest Spectacle in College Racing" and wraps up Gala Week each year. All 33 participating karts are made from scratch by student teams. The event has been raising money for student scholarships since it began in 1958. 

 

Spring Fest 

This  annual, two-day event  draws tens of thousands of participants each year with attractions hosted by a variety of Purdue schools and departments. Fun and interactive activities like the popular Bug Bowl showcase the lighter side of education for people of all ages. 

 

Purdue Exponent 

Ask any group of West Lafayette students whether they've read today's  Exponent, and chances are you will get a resounding yes. The popular newspaper was founded in 1889 and is Indiana's largest collegiate daily newspaper with approximately 150 student staff members. 

 

Old Oaken Bucket 

Found on a farm in southern Indiana, the oaken bucket is one of the oldest football trophies in the nation. The winner of the annual Purdue-Indiana football game gets to add a bronze "P" or "I" chain link and keep the trophy until the next face-off. Ironically, the first competition in 1925 led to a 0-0 tie, resulting in the first link on the chain being an "IP." 

 
 

 

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