Marietta celebrates Pioneer Pride Day

Perhaps Doug Jessmer ’94 would have been awake anyways a few minutes past midnight Friday, Aug. 28, cradling his beautiful 6-month-old baby girl, Olivia, in his arms.

And perhaps he would have been wearing his Marietta T-shirt anyway.

But here at Marietta College, we’re positive Doug was purposefully showing his support for his alma mater on Pioneer Pride Day by being one of the first members of The Long Blue Line to send in a photo of him wearing his Marietta T-shirt.

“We have a 6-month old who sometimes wakes during the night, and she was on her way to sleep when we realized what time it was—just after midnight, Aug. 28,” he said. “So we took advantage of the opportunity, then, realizing there might be others who’d post early photos, fired the photo off to Tom Perry as soon as we could. (Hey, why not get a free shirt, huh? Call it payoff for sleepless nights.)”

As part of Marietta College’s 175th anniversary celebration, we asked our alumni, current students and members of the campus community to literally wear their pride on their sleeves by donning a Marietta T-shirt for the day.

“If Pioneer Pride Day is any indication, we’re in for a very special anniversary year,” said Associate Vice President of Alumni and College Relations Hub Burton. “From Caracas to Walla Walla and everywhere in between, I’ve seen Pioneers unfurl blankets, hold up publications, squeeze into classic sportswear and proudly pull on a new 175th T-shirt.”

The first five alums to send in photos received a special 175th anniversary T-shirt. Jessmer sent his photo in from his home in Clearwater, Fla. The first photo was received just minutes earlier from Redding, Calif., alumna Ann Shimer Barker ’52. Sharyn Gregory Spector ’72 was the second Pioneer to send in her photo. The beautiful backdrop of Eugene, Ore., could be seen in Robert "Buzz" Blumm ’66’s picture. The fifth photo came from alumni couple Ross ’66 and Kathy ’68 Lenhart from their Pawley’s Island, S.C., home.

“Talk about spirit, members of The Long Blue Line have it in large measures and our response on campus with faculty, staff and students has been wonderful as well,” Burton said.

The pride even spilled into the Marietta Community, with some supporters donning their shirts for the day. Teri Ann Zide, owner of Teri Ann’s, a clothing boutique on Front Street, wore her Marietta T-shirt and went one step further—her employees also wore shirts and her storefront shone with Pioneer Pride. She even dressed a couple of mannequins in Navy Blue and White Marietta shirts.

“We are so happy to have Marietta College in this town…Teri Ann's is celebrating its 50th in a couple of years and I started to think about Marietta’s 175 and how impressive it is to reach that milestone. It really is a reason to celebrate!"

To view the photo submissions click here. We will be adding student photos from campus in another photo gallery soon. To learn more about Marietta College's 175th anniversary celebration click here.