5 reasons to mark your calendar for IU Bicentennial celebrations

By MJ Slaby

When Indiana University turns 200 years old, you start the celebrations early -- six months early.

IU kicked off its bicentennial at the start of July for a year of honoring the university with parties, symposiums, festivals and more across the state. While the list of events is ever-growing, here are five reasons to mark your calendar now:

Kick off the festivities

IU campuses will soon be bustling with students as the fall semester gets underway. And the 200 Festival will continue that momentum of the bicentennial from Sept. 19 to 29. A multiday event, the festival includes faculty research days on the Bloomington, IUPUI, Kokomo, South Bend and Southeast campuses. Additional events include the annual IUPUI Regatta on Sept. 21 and a Bicentennial Ceremony on Sept. 28 in Bloomington.

Travel the state

From September 2019 to August 2020, a traveling exhibit, "All for You," will tour the state, stopping in all 92 counties. Hop on the big red bus for virtual-reality displays, videos, historic images and more showing IU's impact on the state. Here's how to book the bus.

Then, put your IU knowledge to the test during the bicentennial race. The multiday event slated for 2020 (dates are still TBA), racers will participate in mental and physical challenges on each campus to honor the history and campus culture of IU.

Nominate a historical marker

Modeled after the state's historical marker program, IU created its own historical markers to honor the people, places, events and organizations that had an impact not just on the university but on the state, nation and world. Marker dedication events are being scheduled starting with events at IU East, IU Kokomo and IU Southeast in September and continuing to other campuses through the spring.

Nominations are still being collected, and deadlines are Jan. 10, 2020, and Jan. 15, 2021.

Expand educational conversations

The Bicentennial Lecture Series expands on universitywide conversations about issues in arts and literature, business, geopolitics, sustainability, civility and more. Look for lectures on your campus.

At least two symposiums are also scheduled for IU's bicentennial year: the International Education at the Crossroads from Oct 25 to 27 on the Bloomington campus and Beyond Boundaries: Indiana Academies Symposium on April 3 and 4 at the Indiana Convention Center in Indianapolis.

Happy 200th birthday, IU

IU officially marks 200 years on Jan. 20, and campuses across the state will mark the occasion.

Events for each campus will be announced soon, but here's a peek at what's happening in Bloomington: The new IU Bloomington history mural panels in Wright Quad and the new "Lux et Veritas" paintings in Presidents Hall will be dedicated. There will also be the ceremonial first ringing of the bells in the newly renovated Arthur R. Metz Bicentennial Grand Carillon.

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