10 traditions for Huskies to be proud of

Madison Degnitz, Lode Writer

As we begin to get into the swing of second semester and Winter Carnival looms in the near future, many different Tech traditions have begun popping up around campus. Michigan Tech is a university rooted deep in tradition, and many of these things are natural to almost every Husky. MTU is home to many awesome traditions, both in its past and present, so here are ten of the best.

Keweenaw Day

Keweenaw Day, commonly referred to as K-Day, is perhaps the most recognizable event that fall semester has to offer. Typically a day for student organizations to advertise their missions and for students to find the perfect extracurricular for them, K-Day is more than just an average activities fair. Keweenaw Day is a celebration of the beautiful natural wonders of the Keweenaw Peninsula. K-Day is always held outside, which gives Tech students a great opportunity to get out and see the Keweenaw and Lake Superior in their full glory.

Tech Time

Our beloved Tech Time may be an unnecessary or unimpressive tradition to some, but it is one many students and faculty members are extremely passionate about. Tech Time, that is, starting everything at “05” (ie: class begins at 9:05, not 9:00) for many students is a great built-in time buffer to ensure that they are not late for class. Rumors have swirled since President Koubek’s arrival that Tech Time would go away and we’d switch to a “00” schedule, something that would disappoint many students. While switching may not seem like such a big deal to some, Tech Time is just one of the many little things that makes Michigan Tech unique, even in the classroom.

Drag Show

Michigan Tech has been hosting an annual drag show for two decades, and it has continued to get bigger and better every year. While it may not seem like an important tradition to some, it has helped to make the Michigan Tech community a more inclusive one. The rural culture of the Upper Peninsula can oftentimes exclude people labeled as “different,” and the MTU Drag Show aims to get rid of that stigma. Plus, the show’s amazing and colorful performers bring some spice to small-town Houghton, something the community and campus sometimes lack.

Hockey

While hockey isn’t unique to Michigan Tech, it certainly means a lot to the MTU community. As our only Division I sports team, our hockey team brings some of the best collegiate hockey players to Houghton and gives the student body something to rally behind. Maybe it’s less about the sport itself, but more about an overall sense of togetherness. Past and present Huskies, along with the surrounding community, will support the hockey team through great times (like winning the Great Lakes Invitational over winter break) and bad times (like being swept by Northern Michigan last March), and that is something deeply special about the MTU community.

Pep Band

Hockey games at Michigan Tech wouldn’t be as memorable if it weren’t for the pep band, so they certainly couldn’t be left off the list. With their yellow and black bibs and mismatched hats, the MTU pep band is full of amazing traditions that bring more fun and excitement to our sporting events. From leading rousing renditions of the Engineer song at hockey games to jazzing up the crowd at football games, the MTU pep band has a specific way of doing things, and they’re doing them right. Michigan Tech events would be a lot less fun if it wasn’t for the loud and proud pep band.

Mitch’s Misfits

Along with the pep band, the Michigan Tech student section would be nothing if it weren’t for the Mitch’s Misfits. A group of many students that sit in the same spot during each game, led by a cowbell (except for that one game against Northern), the Misfits always bring the volume and energy to the the MacInnes Ice Arena. Who else could lead the yelling of “sieve” at the opposing team’s goalie or join the pep band in singing “In Heaven There Is No Beer” but the Misfits?

Broomball

For new students or the common passerby, each potentially unfamiliar with Michigan Tech’s winter culture, the question may appear as to why there are three giant ice pits covering Walker Lawn. The answer? Broomball. A game similar to hockey, but played with brooms and balls, broomball has become a crucial part of many Huskies’ spring semester.

While over time the rules have changed, brooms have improved and the rinks have moved locations, broomball has been a core part of a Michigan Tech winter for many years.

Snow Sculptures

The Winter Carnival snow sculpture competition has been a crucial part of Michigan Tech’s Winter Carnival celebration for decades. “Snow sculpture” is putting it  and more so giant monuments to whatever theme Blue Key has chosen for that year’s Carnival celebration. Many fraternities and other student organizations compete in the month-long contest, taking an entire month to build extremely large and detailed sculptures. Then, of course, there’s the All-Nighter, a night that most Tech students certainly have more than a few memorable experiences from. Whether it’s castles and fortresses or dragons and dinosaurs, Tech students have thought it all and done it all when it comes to making use of all of the snow we get in the Keweenaw.

Love of Winter

“Love” may be a stretch for some, but it should come as no surprise that most of Tech’s student body has some kind of liking towards winter. Huskies have been innovatively enjoying the snow for decades. Things like using dining hall trays to slide down the McNair hill (note: do not try this. Not only is it not allowed, it’s also why there are no trays in McNair) and enjoying a good old-fashioned snowball fight in secret (also not allowed) are just many of the ways Huskies enjoy the long winter and the average 200+ feet of snow that fall every year in Houghton.

Winter Carnival 

Winter Carnival has many separate great Michigan Tech traditions within the festivities, but overall one of the best traditions hands down that Michigan Tech has to offer is Winter Carnival. It’s an all-around great celebration of the season at a place that has some of the best, if not the best, winters around. As Winter Carnival and all its fun approach, please remember to be safe. Like the posters around campus say, “Don’t be dumb, you’re a Husky after all.”