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EIU Family Weekend 2014

September 19 - 21, 2014

Make your Hotel Reservations EARLY!!!





The Student Recreation Center will be open for your enjoyment all weekend – all you have to do is sign a waiver.  You can take a tour of the facility and participate in the drop-in activities. 

Friday:  5:30 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.

Saturday:  10:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.




"Frozen, The Sing-A-Long" features optimist Anna who teams up with Kristoff in an epic journey, encountering Everest-like conditions, and a hilarious snowman named Olaf in a race to find Anna's sister Elsa, whose icy powers have trapped the kingdom in eternal winter.


Friday, 7:00 p.m.

Saturday, 7:00 p.m.

Buzzard Auditorium

Free Admission



A time-tested tradition!  We will take your family photo and insert it into a button for you to wear proudly! Magnetic buttons will be available as well.

Saturday:    10:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.                                                      

Sunday:       10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

Bridge/Walkway Lounge, Second Floor MLK, Jr. Union      

$4 per button                         





“Dine-in” at the MLK, Jr. Food Court between 5pm-7:30pm on Friday and receive a EIU discount of 20% off any purchase excluding Subway”. 



Come and experience art and culture in the time honored tradition of the Chinese Acrobats.  The Chinese Acrobats are truly one-of-a-kind entertainers comprised of 3-4 artists who perform dazzling acrobatic stunts and feats of balance, flexibility, contortion and strength.  The Chinese Acrobats delight audiences with a spell-binding evening of family entertainment featuring Chinese traditions, incredible acrobatics, stunning costumes, Chinese props, and music.  EIU Families will not want to miss this spectacle of a modern-day Chinese theatrical circus!

8:00 p.m.                                    

Union Grand Ballroom

Free Admission                                 



Enjoy cosmic bowling, snacks, and prize drawings while listening to popular music from the ‘70s and ’80’s.

8:00 p.m. – Midnight                                                                  

University Union Bowling Lanes (MLK, Jr. Union)

$2 per game   Free shoe rental                     



Back by popular demand BINGO BONANZA!  A family-pleaser, Bingo Bonanza will feature bigger and better games, prizes and giveaways!  Guaranteed fun for the entire family, featuring celebrity EIU Bingo Callers and more! Refreshments will be provided. Sponsored by University Board Special Events and EIU Parents Club.                                                      

9:00 p.m. -11:00 p.m.

McAfee Gym-South

Free Admission                                   



Tour the observatory facility and observe the moon and other celestial objects through the 16” robotic telescope.                                     

Meet outside under the walkway at the MLK, Jr. Union.

9:30 p.m.






Join the EIU and Charleston communities for this year’s 2.5 or 5K walk, run or wheel on the Panther Trail.  Proceeds will benefit the local American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund.  Each participant will receive a       T-shirt and the chance to win door prizes.   You will register at the time of the race for which event you want to participate in.            

Check in:  8:30 a.m.

Race start time: 9:15 a.m.

Campus Pond and Panther Trail

$20 entry fee      



All families attending Family Weekend can enjoy a “complimentary” breakfast bar featuring bagels, assorted pastries, a fresh fruit salad and choice of beverages.  Join members of the EIU Parent’s Club for a “Meet & Greet” with EIU Administration, faculty and staff.  Not a member of the EIU Parent’s Club?  Then here’s your chance to JOIN!       

9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.

Vending Lounge, First Floor, MLK, Jr. Union




Get decorated! Show your school spirit or just have fun.  Our staff artist will paint your face to order.  A favorite for kids of all ages.                              

10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Bridge Walkway Lounge, Second floor, MLK, Jr. Union




Always popular!  Enjoy some creative fun making Southwestern sand art.  Layer colored sand in bottles to form interesting designs and patterns.  (While supplies last)

10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Bridge Walkway Lounge, Second Floor

MLK, Jr. Union




Take your meal to go and enjoy the outdoors or take a seat in our Dining Facility!   


Hamburger or Jumbo Hotdog or Chicken Breast Sandwich – all off the grill

(Condiments to compliment your sandwich)

Choice between Baked or Regular Chips

Red or Yellow Apple

Homemade Brownies

Soda or Water


11:00 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Stevenson Tower Dining – just east of O’Brien Field & Lantz Arena

Pre-purchase price       $8 per meal

Purchase at the door   $9 per meal

All EIU Students with a Meal Plan – a lunch meal swipe or Lunch Dining Dollars



Join Billy Panther in his backyard for fun and games before the football game.  Try your luck on the mechanical bull!  Face painting, cool games, special guests and more will greet you at Billy’s Backyard.  Feel free to enjoy the shade under the Parents Club tent where you can meet other club members and join in the festivities.                      

10:30 a.m.– 1:30 p.m.

O’Brien Stadium Tailgate Area




Learn the nuances of wine tasting, including identifying the colors, aromas and flavors of wine.  Must be at least 21 to attend, no children are allowed in the room during the event.  Seats are limited (72 per session); participants must sign up at the door and present a valid ID.  Signup sheets available 15 minutes before each session. 

1:00 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.

3:00 p.m. – 4:15 p.m.

University Ballroom - West End




An art make and take activity for “kids” of all ages, fun in an artist-made “invisible” inflatable space ship, and tours of EIU alumni Frankie Flood’s exhibition Machines That Make, the 2014 Art Faculty Exhibition, and the nationally-touring exhibition Ansel Adams: Masterworks.   An EIU Family Weekend event.

1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Tarble Arts Center (2010 9th Street)




Help cheer the EIU Panthers to victory against Austin Peay.  The Panther Marching Band, Pink Panthers Dance Team and EIU Flag corps will perform.                    

1:30 p.m. kickoff

O’Brien Stadium

$20      Adults

$18      Faculty/Staff

$ 7       High School

$ 5       Youth, ages 4 – 14         



Enjoy a traditional family dinner experience prior to the featured family weekend entertainment or other activities on your Saturday night agenda.  Our buffet will include pot roast, loaded mashed potatoes, fettuccini alfredo, green beans almondine, salad bar, dinner rolls, cheesecake, pink lemonade, coffee, and water.    

4:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Grand Ballroom, Second floor, MLK, Jr. Union

$10.25 for adults and EIU students

$5.00 for kids ages 6 – 10

Free for ages 5 and under    




Actor and Comedian Sinbad arrived on the comedy scene with a “ hit’em in the face” style of comedy that has kept audiences laughing in the aisles for over the past two decades.  He freely admits that he doesn’t know any jokes, except for the ones that his dad told him “back in the day”.  Sinbad tells stories, and boy does he tell stories!  The basis of his humor comes from everyone he’s met, everything he’s seen, and everything he’s done.

Ranked by Comedy Central as one of the top 100 standup comedians of all time, Sinbad has built a loyal following by taking audiences’ painful trials or embarrassing tribulations of day-by-day life, throwing them back in their faces, and causing an uproar of comedic hysteria.  He can also make it sound profound without being profane.  Not that he’s any kind of choirboy, but by being the son of a preacher man he decided to keep his comedy clean after his father attended one of his early performances. Up to that time he had been what he describes himself as ”semi-dirty”.  Sinbad says that he learned that night that “funny is funny”, and that masters of dirty comedy such as Redd Foxx, Richard Pryor and Lenny Bruce could all work clean without losing a step.

Sinbad is internationally known for his starring appearances in hit movies like “Jingle All the Way,” playing opposite Arnold Schwarzenegger; “Houseguest” co-starring the late Phil Hartman, and let’s not forget his film debut “Necessary Roughness”, where he did none of his own stunts!  He has starred in the television sitcom “A Different World” as well as his own series, “The Sinbad Show”.  Entertainment mogul Quincy Jones sought out Sinbad to host UPN’s first late night talk show, “Vibe”.  He  also recently appeared as a recurring guest star on the Showtime Original Series “Resurrection Blvd.”  Sinbad has even written a self-help book entitled “Sinbad’s Guide to Life: (Because I Know Everything)”.  Sinbad has drawn legions of fans from his HBO highly-rated comedy specials; “Brain Damaged” (1991), “Afros & Bellbottoms” (1993),  “Son of a Preacher Man” (1996), and “Nuthin But The Funk” (1998).  His annual HBO music concert series (Oh! You didn’t know he was musical?) “Sinbad’s 70’s Soul Music Festival” received the prestigious NAACP Image Award consecutively for two years as the “Most Outstanding Variety Series/Special”.

A one-time basketball standout for the University of Denver, Sinbad agrees that everything he needed to know for comedy, he learned from playing basketball.  There are a number of things comedy and basketball have in common.  One of the most important to Sinbad is “the competitive aspect that teaches you to never give up”.  Now there is one part of Sinbad’s life that has been a well kept secret…he is a closet nerd.  This comes in handy as a Master of Technology during private corporate engagements for clients such as: Intel Corporation, Breakaway Technologies, Apple and Microsoft as well as many others.  As an intermediary to community focused technology solutions, Sinbad believes no one should be left behind in training and education. He has served as a spokesperson for the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering (NACME) encouraging minorities to pursue studies in science, math and engineering. In honor of his parents Donald & Louise Adkins, Sinbad has established an academic scholarship in their name at the esteemed Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia.  Showing his appreciation for our armed servicemen, the comedian/actor has participated on USO tours and performed at the USO of Hampton Roads 2006 Patriotic Festival.

Sinbad has appeared on the FX Television series “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.”  Also, his long awaited stand-up special aired on Comedy Central this past February.  Most recently, Sinbad was seen in the third season of NBC’s Celebrity Apprentice.

Saturday, September 20

Lantz Arena

All Seats Reserved

$21.00 - General Public

8:00 p.m. (Doors open at 7:00 p.m.)





The EIU Family Weekend Breakfast buffet is a “good and tasty” start to your day!  The Breakfast Buffet is a great “send-off” for EIU students and families to have a final meal together as the weekend at EIU draws to a close.  The classic buffet will feature an endless variety of Scrambled eggs, Breakfast Cube Potatoes, Biscuits & Gravy, Fruit Salad, Sausage Links, Assorted Coffee Cakes, Orange juice, Coffee, and Ice Water.

9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

Grand Ballroom, Second Floor, MLK, Jr. Union

$9.50 for adults and EIU Students

$5.00 for kids ages 6 – 10

Free for ages 5 and under