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ASU Family Weekend returns with in-person activities

More than 10,000 people are registered for the weekend activities online and on the four campuses

family weekend

An ASU family poses at Sparky's Touchdown Tailgate on Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019. Family Weekend made its return after a hiatus due to COVID-19.

This year, the University will be hosting in-person and online events for the ASU family weekend from Nov. 5-7 after last year's events were held virtually to adhere to COVID-19 precautions. 

This year's family weekend includes events on the Tempe, Downtown Phoenix, Polytechnic and West campuses in celebration of the ASU community hosted by different ASU departments. 

All colleges on the four different campuses will also host their own events as an opportunity for students and families to participate in activities based on their students' major. 

"We've returned to a full event which allows families to connect with their college campus at their campus," ASU Family program director Kellyn Johnson said.

Johnson mentioned this year ASU is still going to continue with some events being virtual for families and students who can't make it. 

For families who cannot attend the in-person events, there will be some virtual activities such as Coffee and Conversations specifically for ASU Online families on Nov. 6 and family yoga taught via Zoom on Nov. 7.

According to Johnson, this year more than 10,00 people registered for the ASU family weekend activities. 

Johnson said families have reached out to "say how thrilled they are to be able to come to campus" and visit with their students.

"I do think in the past year we all missed the ability to come together," Johnson said.

On Friday from 5 to 7 p.m., the Polytechnic campus will be hosting a family weekend car show, a tradition on the campus and sponsored by the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering.

At the Downtown Phoenix campus, ASU will host Tapas on Taylor an event with free food and games on Taylor Mall on Friday from 5:30 to 7 p.m.

Also on Friday from 6 to 7:30 p.m., Undergraduate Student Government West will host Create Your ASU Memories with painting, a photo booth and jeopardy game for families at the West campus.

On Saturday, a block party including games and food will take place before the Sun Devil football game against USC. Families will need to pay for tickets to the game.

Braydon Clayton, a sophomore majoring in business management and a Programming and Activities Board director, is the event lead for the block party. When planning events for the block party, he said PAB takes feedback from past years and implements suggestions into the next year's events.

"We want to get the families involved in any way that we can so we are going to have events that everyone can do and not just the students," Clayton said. 

On Sunday families can participate in the Spirit Hike up "A" Mountain hosted by the Student Alumni Association on the Tempe campus from 8:30 to 10 a.m.

Samantha Glass, a junior business law major and a PAB director, helped plan the Memorial Union After Dark event, which will take place on Nov. 5 from 6 to 9 p.m. The event is a popular tradition on the Tempe campus with games, crafts, movie showing, free food, music and more.

"I'm excited to see how this event goes with (students) being there (in person) and seeing how involved they get their families into it," Glass said.

Last year people attended family weekend virtually due to COVID-19 restrictions. PAB and other organizations involved with planning the weekend events had to learn and adjust to the restrictions while making sure families and students were entertained and enjoying these virtual events that would normally take place in person.  

"I know COVID and being virtual really hit everyone and every aspect, including me at work with the Programming and Activities Board," said Sariah Fabian, a senior majoring in film and media production and game day event coordinator for PAB. "We all had to figure out a way how to work around it to still try to make everyone entertained and somewhat have that kind of feeling."

Family weekend is an opportunity for students to embrace school spirit with their families, Fabian said.

"It's that school spirit that you get to really embrace. I personally always enjoy that with my family," Fabian said. "I think it's a good three-day bonding feeling that you probably don't get to spend all that time, especially if you know your parents are not in state or you don't live with your family."

While registration is closed for the weekend, tickets for the football game are still on sale. For a detailed list of events on the four campuses, visit the online ASU Family Weekend schedule.

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