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The University of Wisconsin Oshkosh will host one of the centerpieces of its 150th anniversary on Sept. 12: the Sesquicentennial Community Celebration. The free event will feature food, refreshments, live entertainment, children’s activities, historical exhibitions and more—all showcasing the beautiful Oshkosh campus.

The Sept. 12 date wasn’t chosen out of convenience—it’s the 150th anniversary of the first day of classes at the Oshkosh Normal School.

“We invite the entire Oshkosh community and our neighbors and partners throughout the region to join us on Sept. 12, mark the day classes began here in 1871 and celebrate UWO’s decades of life-changing teaching, learning, research and service,” said Chancellor Andrew Leavitt.

The festivities run 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the pedestrian walkway between Reeve Memorial Union and the Arts and Communication building. A 30-minute program will begin at 1 p.m. and will feature Leavitt and other university dignitaries.

“This is an incredible milestone for UW Oshkosh, this city and our region,” Leavitt said. “In the late 1800s, city of Oshkosh leaders and residents fought for the ability to invest in the establishment of a teacher’s college in their city. They were futuristic. They knew it would be a beacon, transforming their local schools and community and improving the quality of life here. I wish they had a window to this moment, so that they could see the positive ripple effects of their hard work, hopes and investments 150 years later.”

Additional highlights of the event:

  • Live music performed by current Titans and UWO grads. Northsoul, The Astronomers and The Jazz Orgy will perform on the main stage, while Ken Yerkes, Carson Blake and The Present Age will be showcased on the side stage.
  • Children’s activities include bounce houses, giant bubbles and sidewalk chalk.
  • Kid games organized and run by Titan student-athletes.
  • Fifth Ward Brewing Company will serve a sesquicentennial commemorative brew.
  • Cookout food provided by Aladdin Campus Dining.
  • Food trucks will include Aftershock Smokers, Any Street Grill, Dante’s Inferno, Funtime Enterprises and Ong’s Food Truck.
  • Grace Lim’s Humans of UW Oshkosh project will be displayed in Dempsey Hall. The commemorative event will have first-person recollections of faculty, staff, students, administration and alumni about their time at UWO.
  • Campus tours will be led by the UW Oshkosh admissions office. There will be campus tours at 11 a.m., noon and 2 p.m.
  • Free parking on campus. A shuttle service will be available.

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