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Beautiful U Day.

Beautiful U Day 1998.Beautiful U Day 1998

Thank you to everyone who took part in Beautiful U Day '98! Thank you for your efforts and your devotion to making the University of Minnesota a better place to work and study.


Eat Up

As might be expected, food was a big draw on Beautiful U Day. More than 6,000 people on the two campuses enjoyed lunch compliments of Beautiful U Day crews. In Moos Tower, the Health Sciences Zone staff passed out ice cream treats to faculty, staff and patients.


Heritage Marker Dedication

One of the highlights of Beautiful U Day '98 was the installation of first of Heritage Markers. The Heritage Markers highlight heritage – academic, geographic, and historic heritage of the University. The markers are designed to help both visitors and frequent campus attendees to experience the University in a special way. Five initial markers were installed on Beautiful U Day ’98 with John Sergeant Pillsbury (as portrayed by J.B. Eckert) arriving in grand fashion and presiding over the ceremonies. Heritage markers are now in place in front of Northrop Auditorium, on the Campus Mall, in front of the Social Science Tower, between Cooke Hall and the University Recreation Center, and on the St. Paul Lawn.

Approximately 10 additional makers will be installed on Beautiful U Day ’99 with locations and content based on input from faculty and staff. Finally, about 10 additional markers are planned for Beautiful U Day 2000 which will mark the completion of the "University of Minnesota Heritage Trail." A brochure describing all points on the trail will be produced and distributed at marker sites.

Funds will be made available to other campuses and University facilities to create similar markers or for other projects which highlight their unique heritage. The project will take construction issues into consideration and will be integrated into all signage efforts and sesquicentennial planning.


Revitalization of the South Mall

The first step in the exciting revitalization of the area south of Coffman Union along East River Road is the removal of the East River Road Ramp. The 32 year old ramp provided space for countless cars and drivers over the years, but safety concerns and revitalization plans meant it had to go. In its place, the University will redevelop the area, open the campus to the river and restore the concept of Cass Gilbert who designed the mall in 1907.

University President Mark Yudof started the revitalization process by climbing aboard a 50-ton crane and swinging a wrecking ball into the ramp elevator tower.

With Beautiful U Day falling on the Friday of Homecoming weekend, a Michigan State Spartan flag provided Yudof with an appropriate target.


Special Projects

Beautiful U Day '98 featured a number of special projects on both campuses designed to make the University of Minnesota a more inviting and aesthetically pleasing place to be.

Residents of Territorial Hall got into the spirit of the day by purchasing and planting a tree. The residents paid for the tree out of the Hall Council General Account and planted the tree in the Hall courtyard. A plaque recognizing the effort is the next step, as well as plans for Beautiful U Day '99.

Volunteers picked up trash along East River Road, and painted the sheds underneath the Science Classroom Building. The Graffenberg Tank outside of the Tate Lab of Physics was painted with appropriate maroon and gold, and the Gopher Way Directional Signs were formally unveiled.

Flags fly again on the four corners of Cooke Hall thanks to a flag pole revitalization project by Facilities Management Zone4. Flags flew on the site regularly when Memorial Stadium was in use, but the poles haven't been used since the Stadium was torn down. The flags are now back and look great.

Finally, President Yudof presided over the ribbon cutting and formal dedication of the new Information Booth located on Pillsbury Drive next to the Civil Engineering building.


Employee Recognition

Many members of the University community took time on Beautiful U Day to recognize and thank the many employees who work each day to make a more beautiful U. Formal presentations of maroon and gold mums and certificates of appreciation were common. But even more common were the comments and genuine words of praise from students, faculty and staff regarding the condition of the campus. Beautiful U Day was also an opportunity to take a look back at the accomplishments of the past year that have made the campus look nice. These accomplishments include:

  • A fresh maroon and gold coat of paint on the Wilkins Hall pedestrian bridge.
  • Installation of 40 new benches across campus.
  • Washing 58,000 windows.
  • Replacement of 50 storm-damaged trees.
  • Improvements in campus signage.
  • Parking lot improvements affecting 15,000 users.
  • Installation and repair of 1,300 bicycle rack spaces.
  • Replacement of 6,600 lineal feet of sidewalk.
  • Initiation of window and roof replacement



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