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Reunion Weekend A Rousing Success

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Thank you to everyone who traveled to Happy Valley for the 2018 Penn State Rugby Friends and Family Weekend! More than 200 people attended this year’s festivities, which were kicked off on Friday with the Alumni Golf Outing. Tim Antoian and Chris “Nova” Wolff took charge of the event this year with over 20 golfers playing “scramble” golf on the Blue Course. On Friday evening, we celebrated the founders of the Women’s Program at a dinner at the Nittany Lion Inn. Everyone who attended was treated to hearing the team’s pioneers recount how it all started and how much their experiences and the program’s overall journey has meant to them. On Saturday, the Alumni played the undergrad teams in perfect weather conditions on real grass with Beaver Stadium in the background – just like the old days! The matches were competitive and fun for both players and spectators.
We’re not sure about the scores, but for tradition’s sake, we will say the Alumni Teams won both matches! Thank you to Brandon and the Zlupko family as well as the girls from Lindsay Pullara's studio, Dance Fusion, for their help all day selling merchandise. We hope everyone enjoyed re-stocking their gear!
The banquet was again held at the Hawbaker Pavilion at the PSU Golf Courses.  With over 200 in attendance, it was great to see so many alumni, parents and friends of the program catch-up and get to know one another. Thank you to everyone who donated items for the silent auction. It became very competitive – thanks to the Boccutis’ friendly encouragement – and it raised over $1000 for the program. Fraser Grigor announced that at next year’s silent auction there will be a very rare collection of items available to be bid on: 4 posters from the Club’s early history of which there are only 3 known sets. We will email information about this closer to the 2019 Reunion. Speaking of posters, Jim Mathias designed an incredible poster that visually summarizes the Women’s Team’s history of success, which was sold at the event. We will be initiating online orders soon!

During the banquet, there was an important announcement from the Alumni Club Board of Directors. Pete Steinberg informed the banquet attendees that the Alumni Club would be transitioning to become the Penn State Rugby Booster Club. This will enable all the program’s stakeholders including parents and friends of the program, in addition to the alumni, to formally participate in ensuring the program’s success. Also, we will be forming a new organization, the Penn State Rugby Foundation, to execute a long-term fundraising campaign with the goal of guaranteeing that PSU Rugby exists and competes at an elite level forever. More information regarding these developments will be released soon. Finally, congratulations to new Lifetime Member recipients, Men’s Head Coach Justin Hundley ‘07, Alumni Club Board Member Kelli Vetter ‘14, and Ryan Jones, a writer for The Penn Stater who has covered the Rugby Program.
Please stay tuned this fall for important updates regarding the changes to our supporting organizations and for upcoming events as well as match reports. We hope to see you on the sidelines during the 2018-2019 season!