Family Weekend History
In 1966, William & Mary held its very first Family Weekend, then called "Parents' Day." About 1,400 parents attended. It was modeled after "Dad's Day" at Duke University and meticulously planned. A highlight among the many events was a tour of William & Mary's new state-of-the-art learning facility, the Earl Gregg Swem Library. 2016 marked both the 50th anniversary of Family Weekend and the 50th anniversary of Swem Library.
For the inaugural Parents’ Day, parents as well as students received a written invitation. From the outset, William & Mary encourage student involvement in the planning and execution of Parents' Day, emphasizing it was a "student project." In a tradition continuing today, the W&M Chorus offered a concert, though the alma mater did not begin as a focal point; in fact, it was not sung at all in 1966.
Enjoy photos from W&M's very first Parents' Day as well as recent years to explore weekend traditions, both old and new: