REPORT ON PI TKE MARCH 30 SUCCESSFUL REUNION...YOU MISSED A GREAT EVENT IF YOU DID NOT ATTEND

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WOW....What a great reunion was had by all in attendance this past March 30, 2019.

The chapter house was open for its first all active and alumni reunion event since the 2018-2019 school year closure.  Word has it from all the guests who talked with our board members, that the event was a great reopening.  Over 150 attended including all the actives, current 23 pledges, alumni, their wives and our TKE and PSU official guests.  The renovated public areas of the house on display showed off the new dining room tables, all new light fixtures on first floor, all common areas throughout the 18,000 square foot house being repainted, the new rugs throughout the house, the tiled brothers kitchen service area, the refinished wood floors, and the landscape refurbishments.  The current pledge class's newly built super huge life guard stand captured everyone's attention in the rear patio.  No doubt the actives did a fabulous job in preparing the house for the alumni "inspectors".  Floors were buffed and waxed, surfaces spotless, lots of chairs for everyone, a delicious and nicely displayed buffet, carpets freshly cleaned, plenty of food, refreshments and deserts for all.  A special thanks is extended to board member, a past Prytanis, Vice President of the house corporation, Pi TKE alumni President, and alumni advisor to the actives, Andrew Tomaskevitch '14 for donating all the $600 plus worth of liquid refreshments.

REPORT ON PI TKE MARCH 30 SUCCESSFUL REUNION...YOU MISSED A GREAT EVENT IF YOU DID NOT  ATTEND

TKE cake on display in the renovated and newly named Bower Dining Room prior to being devoured.

 

Around 3:00 PM all gathered to hear our speakers.  First to talk was Pete Dawson, TKE Regional and Alumni director who explained TKE national's newly enacted prohibition on alcohol in all TKE chapter properties as of January 1, 2019  Only beer and wine of 8% or less is allowed on premise.  Pete explained how all the other fraternities who are in the national fraternity association are imposing this same ruling on their member chapter houses beginning Fall of 2019.  He also informed those present of the recent elimination of over 40 TKE chapter houses for numerous violation of TKE standards, requirements, ethics, and financial obligations.  

 

Pete and Shane McClure, Pete's Assistant Director gave a joint presentation to Pi Chapter of a "TKE Certificate of Merit" for all the chapter's effort and courage to close the house for one year; its challenges to remain active during the closure; and its rejuvenated programs, cultural changes, greater selectivity of membership, social down scaling, risk management practices, and overall new spirit and awareness of the changes needed in today society's fraternities.  Congratulations were in order and well deserved.

 

Vice President of Student Affairs at Penn State, Damon Sims followed Pete with a recap of all the events leading to the major changes in many regulations governing Greek organizations.  Vice President Sims commended Pi TKE for its decision to close the house and refocus the membership.  He acknowledged that act as one of the most courageous and worthwhile success stories for a Penn State fraternity.  Damon spoke firmly and openly about what needs to be done with the Greek system at Penn State and expressed his and the university's appreciation for the example Pi-TKE has set for all the other Greek organizations.  Damon's visit and tour of our chapter house was his first to the house.   In closing Damon delivered a wonderfully, truthful, and light-hearted side comment: "TKE is one house I can visit and not feel like I need a shower after leaving it".  

 

Christopher Humza '20, past Prytanis, Harvey Smith '21, current Prytanis, and Jeff Bower '69, board member were then called upon to talk collectively about how the chapter has survived and changed with all the new rules and extensive administrative regulations.  No one got up through all the presentations to leave.  Each speaker was well received for their frank presentations.

 

Jim Rummell '76, was asked to come forward by event moderator Tom Becker '69 to present his comments and history of the ups and downs of our chapter.  He complimented the current members on being only the second group to successfully occupy the house with no one ever previously living in the house.  The first group being brought in at the construction of the present house back in the 1920s.  Jim weaved his talk into the planned surprise presentation honoring Jeff Bower '69 with a bronze plaque designating the Jeffrey M. Bower Dining Room to Jeff for his being a "Dedicated Leader and Advisor".  Jeff was totally caught off guard and had no knowledge of the board's decision to so honor him.  All present were told of Jeff's many professional, civic, personal, and TKE accomplishments resulting in a well-deserved round of applause and congratulation.

 

The event was a huge success with everyone enjoying being greeted by the actives, touring the house, getting the latest information on the fraternity system, honoring Jeff Bower, and thoroughly enjoying each other’s company.  Many expressed their appreciation to the planners and working actives serving at the event.  If you were not there you missed a "TOP TKE" event.  

REPORT ON PI TKE MARCH 30 SUCCESSFUL REUNION...YOU MISSED A GREAT EVENT IF YOU DID NOT  ATTEND

Scott Ulrich '74, Lancaster, PA;  Alan Bittinger '75, Hanover, PA;  and Scott's wife, Louise look at Orchid Ball picturess from the 70's in the Larry Foster '48 Library.

  

REPORT ON PI TKE MARCH 30 SUCCESSFUL REUNION...YOU MISSED A GREAT EVENT IF YOU DID NOT  ATTEND
 
Dave Goss '69, Pittsburgh, PA, and John Denman '70, Wheaton, IL.  Dave and John catching up on the past at the March 30 reunion.  They are standing at the base of the main stair in the foyer.  Dave  repaired and replaced the strain glass windows and doors in the dining room during the earlier house major renovations of 2012-2013. 
 
REPORT ON PI TKE MARCH 30 SUCCESSFUL REUNION...YOU MISSED A GREAT EVENT IF YOU DID NOT  ATTEND
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Ryan Hayes '22 and John Hayes '89 of McDonald, PA, father and son take the opportunity for a photo in front of the new TKE-PSU backdrop at the March 30 reunion.