Sneak peak into Utah Tech’s D-Week

Utah Tech’s annual D-Week will be taking place April 8-13. Every day of the week features different traditions unitizing students and community providing a week of celebration. Cora Mark | Sun News Daily

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Past meets present as Utah Tech University prepares for one of its longest-standing traditions: D-Week.

D-Week will take place April 8-13. Each day of the week will hold one or more events celebrating campus and southern Utah.

When the student body first built the “D” on the hill in 1915, D-Week was set aside to remember the history of the campus and showcase the Trailblazer spirit. Even though the university goes by a new name, the week has retained the name “D-Week.”

Karson Ray, a senior healthcare administration major from St. George, said the name has remained D-Week to keep the community involved.

“We’re just trying to make sure that the community feels like they still have a place here,” Ray said.

One of the oldest traditions that has been a part of D-Week is the Trailblazer Queen pageant, which was formerly known as the D-Queen pageant. The pageant will take place April 9 at 7:30 p.m. at the Eccles Mainstage.

Ray said the Utah Tech Student Association is planning the pageant as well as some of the other events of the week.

Other long-standing traditions are the painting of the “D” on the hill and The Great Race. However, the race is a tradition that went away and has now come back in recent D-Week celebrations. The race will be April 12 from 5-6 p.m. at the Greater Zion Stadium.

John Bowler, director of alumni relations, said the 10-legged race is a fun one to watch. He said historically, a leg of the race involved a race up Foremaster Ridge on a horse or motorcycle, which has now been exchanged for more tame modes of transportation, like bikes and scooters.

A new tradition that has been added to D-Week is Brooks’ Block Party. The party will be held April 8 from 6-8 p.m. at the Main Street alley in downtown St. George. The event will include food trucks, local vendors and Brooks’ birthday cake unveiling. This year is only the second annual Brooks’ Block Party.

Valerie De La O, events and promotions coordinator, said the Brooks mascot and Trailblazer rebrand was first unveiled during D-Week, so Brooks’ Block Party has become a birthday celebration for the mascot.

“The theme of D-Week is traditions,” De La O said. “It really is just a celebration of campus.”

The week will also include an art in the city tour, a Day of Giving, Live & Local, a carnival and an alumni awards celebration. A full itinerary of the events of the week can be found here.

Bowler said the week celebrates the Trailblazer identity, which is about being different, innovative and imaginative. He said the university has changed over the years, but this week acknowledges what the university is and where it came from.