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Inside Iowa State, a newspaper for faculty and staff, is published by the Office of University Relations.

May 21, 2009

Summer slate is full, again

by Erin Rosacker and Anne Krapfl

Iowa State and Ames will stay busy this summer, with a full slate of events on campus. Some visitors return annually for big events, such as this week's Special Olympics Iowa summer games, but many will be first-time guests. Here are some of the events that will draw the biggest crowds to campus.

Special Olympics Iowa summer games

An estimated 2,800 Special Olympics Iowa athletes, many of them housed in residence halls on the southeast corner of campus, are expected to compete at several campus venues May 21-23. An additional 2,000 people, including families, coaches and volunteers, also will visit Ames for the annual event. Competition begins at 9 a.m. Thursday and ends with a closing ceremony at noon on Saturday. Thursday's opening ceremony (7-9 p.m., Hilton) is free and open to the public.

Odyssey of the Mind World Finals

Teams of youth use creative methods for problem-solving in Odyssey of the Mind competitions around the globe. This year's regional, state and international winners in four age divisions, from elementary school through college, will present their solutions to one of five different problems -- in the form of contraptions, performances or other creations -- at the world finals competition. More than 15,000 visitors are expected to converge on Ames for the May 27-30 competition. Participants will be staying in campus residence halls, and ISU Dining is readying for hungry customers with longer hours and menu adjustments.

Summer orientation

An estimated 4,100 freshman and 300 transfer students will visit campus between June 2 and July 1. Visiting with them are an estimated 6,500 family members. During the freshman two-day stays, students will register for classes, obtain ISU cards and e-mail accounts, and attend sessions about their transition to campus as well as educational sessions about their colleges and departments. Those spending a night on campus -- about 2,000 over the course of the month -- will stay in Martin Hall. Orientation visitors will park in the Memorial Union ramp and lots 7, 59A (west edge of campus) and 60 (west edge of Campustown).

Methodists conference

The annual Iowa Conference of the United Methodist Church will bring more than 1,800 adults (and some children) to campus June 4-7. Conference sites are Hilton and Scheman. About 400 of the guests will stay in Richardson Court residence halls; the rest will be in Ames hotels and in RVs in the Iowa State Center lots.

Iowa American Legion Auxiliary: Girls State

An anticipated 350 young women who just completed their junior year of high school will gather June 21-26 to study and set up miniature city, county and state governments. They'll stay at M-W-L and meet at the Iowa State Center.

Iowa 4-H Youth Conference

An anticipated 1,000 Iowa teenagers (ages 14-18) come to campus June 30-July 2 for the annual 4-H youth conference (they don't have to be 4-H members to participate). They'll fill most of the Richardson Court residence halls and use classrooms and auditoriums across campus. The event includes workshops and speakers, a banquet and dance at Hilton, a central campus picnic lunch and an afternoon of local community service.

Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod: International Youth Rally

About 1,500 high school-age students come to campus July 8-11 for meetings, fellowship and community service. They'll stay in the M-W-L and Richardson Court residence halls. There's an evening event July 8 that will use much of the main and lower levels of the MU, but otherwise their activities take place in Stephens and Scheman. The main floor of the Lied Center will be reserved for their use several hours daily. They'll do community service projects in the Ames and Story County areas the afternoon of July 10.

Iowa Games

The bulk of Iowa Games' summer competition takes place July 16-19, but three weekends now are needed to get all the games in. Eight sports kick off July 10-12, and July 24-26 wraps up the games with 11 events. The main weekend boasts 42 events at venues in Ames and on campus. An estimated 17,000 athletes are expected to participate, while thousands more will serve as volunteers, officials and spectators. The July 17 finals fest (5-7:30 p.m., Iowa State Center parking lot B-6) and opening ceremony (8 p.m., Jack Trice Stadium) are free and open to the public.

Shrine Bowl week

The 37th annual event, featuring 90 of the state's finest pre-college football players and 60 cheer squad members, will be played July 25 at Jack Trice Stadium. Football players and coaches begin practices July 17; cheer squads arrive July 20. Coaches and students stay in the M-W-L complex and practice on east campus fields. Tickets are $10; game proceeds support The Shriners Hospitals for Children's programs.


Thousands of visitors are expected on campus this summer, beginning with this week's Special Olympics Iowa summer games.