Entertainment steps up for mom

JOSH BABCOCK | Evergreen columnist

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At many universities, Mom’s Weekend is a small, nearly unnoticed event. At WSU, Mom’s Weekend is a university tradition that has lasted for more than 30 years and is one of the school’s most celebrated occasions.

If you look at what other universities plan for their students’ parents, the significance and strength behind one of the most eventful Mom’s Weekends in the nation can be found here in Pullman.

For the past six years WSU has brought some of the biggest names on radio and TV for Coug moms to see.

In 2008, the legendary Elton John traveled to Pullman, and the next year featured the Grammy Award-winning band Huey Lewis and the News.

For WSU’s Mom’s Weekend, the big names never missed a beat. In 2010, Jay Leno, the biggest name on late night TV, traveled over the wheat fields to visit Pullman for the event.

When it comes to providing these headliners, Beasley Coliseum Director Leo Udy said, “It’s a process that’s probably six to nine months long.”

Although Udy recognized the weekend’s popularity over the years helps acquire guests, Udy said, “Traditionally we’ve tried to have top-quality entertainment for the parents.”

However, at other universities events dedicated to parents are far less celebrated.

At Oregon State University, Mom’s Weekend is no such extravaganza.

Although both WSU and OSU provide wine gardens, yoga and, a number of different campus tours, there isn’t much else that OSU will provide moms this year, which makes OSU’s Mom’s Weekend something entirely different than what happens here at WSU.

OSU doesn’t have a headliner, any mini golf, or silent auction, but other universities disgrace mom’s weekend even more so.

Across the state from OSU, Oregon University has three organized family weekends, but if that sounds promising, think again.

Oregon’s spring family weekend occurs around the time universities like WSU celebrate mom’s weekend. However, according to the University of Oregon website the weekend is described in a few short sentences: “Join us for Spring Family Weekend! We will cheer on our Ducks for the annual spring game and then head over to PK Park to watch our Ducks baseball team take on the Arizona Wildcats.”

You might expect to find this on the university’s baseball page, but the truth is there is no mom’s weekend tradition that offers moms what WSU does performance or activity wise.

While mom’s weekend is a forgotten celebration at many universities, in the past few years WSU has remained consistent with its over-the-top Mom’s Weekend party.

The giant spring Mom’s Spring Arts and Crafts Fair at Beasley Coliseum, the popular fashion show, and the 29th annual Mom’s Weekend Lu’au are staple activities that take place annually during the event, and although these activities alone are more than what most campuses do for mom’s weekend, the headliners have continued to have big names.

In 2011 the bubbly, multi-platinum Colbie Caillat visited WSU, and then in 2013 one of the greatest comedians, Wayne Brady, came to Pullman and put on show for WSU moms.

This weekend the tradition’s dominance will continue with a performance headlined by Jerry Seinfeld.

Thanks to the university’s efforts, Mom’s Weekend at WSU is one of the most organized in the country. Just remember, don’t take the celebration for granted this weekend with your mom because traditions like these don’t happen everywhere.

– Josh Babcock is a senior communication major from Pullman. He can be contacted at 335-2290 or by [email protected] The opinions expressed in this TYPE are not necessarily those of the staff of The Daily Evergreen or those of Student Publications.