This spring, Thursday, April 27, BC students will celebrate the school’s 39th Annual Mud Pig Day. Events will kick off at 10 a.m. with the infamous mud pit — a man-made pool of cold water and murky mud just outside the Dome Gymnasium — and water slide — a long plastic tarp on BC’s high hill beside the Dome doused with water and cooking oil.
At 11 a.m. in the Dome field, inflatable games will open for students, including an extreme obstacle course, human bowling, a Velcro wall, mechanical bull, and a photo booth. The cookout will start at noon, followed by a corn hole tournament at 2 p.m. Concluding the day’s festivities will be dinner at 5 p.m, a lip sync battle in the Student Activities Center at 7 p.m., and the traditional bon fire at 9 p.m. in the Dome field.
According to BC’s Meagan Stroud, director of student activities, and Olivia Ray, president of the Student Activities Leadership Team (SALT), preparation for Mud Pig Day began at the beginning of the spring semester. Student members of SALT took time deciding the agenda, t-shirt design, and reserving the larger pieces of equipment to make Mud Pig Day just as successful as it has been every year.
Mud Pig Day began on the campus of Bluefield College in the spring of 1979 when prior to the start of final exams BC students took a day off from classes, away from books, tests and studying to commemorate the end of another semester of achievement. Students recall how early years of Mud Pig Day included the actual chasing of a small pig, the crowning of a Mud Pig Day King, and the development of a formal day of games, competition, food, music, recreation, and fun under the guidance of Dr. Charles Tyer, president of the college from 1972 to 1988.
“I was there for the first Mud Pig Day,” said 1981 alumna Anna Bradberry Jones about the beginning of the tradition in 1979. “It was so much fun, and what a mess it made. I remember all the girls outside the dorm trying to clean up with the water hose and tracking the water and mud all the way to our rooms. Those were such great memories.”
Some say the tradition began with a simple water balloon fight that developed into a full-scale, campus-wide water battle, and others recall it emerging out of a desire to increase school spirit and was named after a Lady Rams softball player who looked like every game she played was in the mud. No matter how or why, the celebration is now legendary, and students look forward to it every year and consider it the best day of the spring semester.
“I have enjoyed playing corn hole with friends and going down the slide,” said senior Lee Norris of his past experiences with Mud Pig Day. “I’ve also enjoyed just getting a day off from school and homework and just having a fun, stress-free day.”
Senior Stephanie Dunning anticipates the day as being one to enjoy fellowship with the people around her. “I’m mainly looking forward to just being with friends, as it will be my last Mud Pig Day,” she said.
From freshmen to seniors to faculty and staff, the day promises to bring excitement, fun, and a lot of mud.
“Come ready to have fun and blow off steam before finals,” said Stroud.
Local residents are invited to stop by and join the Bluefield College family for Mud Pig Day 2017. There will be no charge for the fun, except for meals and t-shirts. For more information, contact the BC Office of Public Relations by e-mail at [email protected] or by phone at 276-326-4212.