October 4, 2018

Mayville State University alumni and friends, as well as veterans and all U.S. military personnel, were honored during the MSU Alumni Association’s 2018 homecoming festivities held Sept. 28-30. The weekend was highlighted by good times and good friends, all with a common thread of Mayville State University, “the school of personal service.”

The annual homecoming activities, sponsored by the Mayville State University Alumni Association, began with the Athletic Hall of Fame and Athletic Coaches Hall of Fame Awards Dinner held Friday evening, Sept. 28. About 200 folks enjoyed the evening, which included the induction of several to the MSU Athletic Hall of Fame and the MSU Athletic Coaches Hall of Fame. Mayville State graduate (1965) and 2008 MSU Athletic Hall of Fame inductee Lt. Gen. Emil R. “Buck” Bedard, USMC (ret.) served as honorary emcee of the program. MSU Athletic Director Ryan Hall presented each of the honorees for induction.

Former Mayville State head men’s basketball coach Craig Smith, now at Utah State University, and his 2004-05, 2005-06, and 2006-07 teams were inducted into the Mayville State University Athletic Hall of Fame. The MSU Athletic Hall of Fame recognizes people who excelled as athletes or coaches at Mayville State or who have gone above and beyond in support of Mayville State athletics.

David Dose, Glencoe, Minn., Maxine Mehus, Finley, N.D., and David Strand, Amenia, N.D. were inducted into the Athletic Coaches Hall of Fame, in recognition of their successful careers as coaches after graduating from Mayville State.  

A highlight of the homecoming festivities was the annual ceremony of remembrance held at the Military Honor Garden on the grounds of the Edson and Margaret Larson Alumni and Leadership Center at Mayville State. The Avenue of Flags, provided by the local American Legion Post 8, beautifully enhanced the Military Honor Garden monument which was the centerpiece of the event. The First & Farmers Filharmonic brass ensemble provided musical selections.

The ceremony began with an invocation by Rev. Aanen Gjovik, 1964 Mayville State graduate who is serving as interim pastor at Mayville Lutheran Church, and the singing of “The Star Spangled Banner” by A1C Brody Katka, USAF. Military Honor Garden co-chair Emil “Buck” Bedard addressed those who gathered and project co-chair Martin Johnson, 1966 Mayville State graduate and USMC corporal, led a commendation recognizing the ending of World War I and a 50-year commemoration of the Vietnam War. Several Vietnam War veterans were presented with pins of recognition, as were Mayville State’s 2018 homecoming queen and king, Kaitlyn Kuntz, West Fargo, N.D., and Brady Nygaard, Mayville, N.D. Singer and song writer Shaun Schipper, Fargo, N.D., sang a song and read a poem, both of which paid tribute to the Vietnam War and those who served. 

The program ended on a solemn note, with program emcee John Klocke, Executive Director of the MSU Foundation, reading the names of each of the individuals who have been honored by loved ones in the Military Honor Garden project. The ringing of a bell by Jan Klocke, Fargo, N.D., followed each name. Mike Bakken and Paul Hanson of Mayville played an echoing rendition of “Taps” to wrap up the ceremony.

The Alumni Association board members hosted a chili feed inside the Larson Center following the program.

The honoring of the newest inductees to the Mayville State University Performing Arts Hall of Fame, as well as the traditional MSU Music Department homecoming concert, were a grand finale for a fantastic weekend for Mayville State alumni and friends. The concert was held Sunday afternoon, Sept. 30, in the Classroom Building Auditorium. The students who make up Mayville State’s current jazz band were thrilled to have the opportunity to play together with several of the Performing Arts Hall of Fame inductees as they joined them in their performance.

PAHOF inductees Doug Barta, Parker, Colo, Cynthia (Johnson) Kaldor, Bismarck, N.D., Conrad Miska, Eagan, Minn., Richard Rousseau, St. Paul, Minn., T. Lynn Schroeder, Cavalier, N.D. and the 1978 Mayville State jazz band, comprised the sixth group of distinguished individuals to be inducted into the Performing Arts Hall of Fame since its establishment in 2013.

Homecoming 2018 culminated with a social to honor the Performing Arts Hall of Fame inductees. Hosted by the Alumni Association board, the social was held immediately following the concert in the MSU Campus Center Luckasen Room.

“Homecoming 2018 was a very special time,” said MSU Director of Alumni Affairs Beth Swenson. “Those who took part in the festivities were happy to be ‘home’ and to re-connect with one another. The people, alumni, friends, students, faculty, staff, make Mayville State an exceptional place. Homecoming is a reason for them all to come together to celebrate the thread they all have in common, Mayville State University. I sincerely thank the members of the Alumni Association board for their hard work and dedication that makes these celebrations possible.”