Monday, May 7, 2012

Our VIP VEISHEA Experience

I'm a winner!! But you already knew that:) The premise of this post all began with an e-mail. This e-mail to be exact:

Subject: ISUAA Fan Drive Winner!


On behalf of the ISUAA Young Alumni Council it my pleasure to inform you that you are a grand prize winner of our Facebook Fan Drive!  The package includes a "VEISHEA VIP" package for you and a friend with lodging, event tickets, souvenirs and VIP parade access during VEISHEA weekend, all sponsored by the ISUAA Young Alumni Council."

I literally read the e-mail and was like "Hmm, I didn't sign up for any contest"... so I forwarded it to Nick letting him know I'm thinking this is a spam message. He replied back pretty quickly confirming this was indeed a contest they advertised in their newsletter (which I never seemed to make time to read, oops!). So it sank in, I'm a winner and we can go back to ISU for VEISHEA and have a fun weekend getaway with most expenses covered!

First off, I have to clarify for those who may not know, VEISHEA is an acronym for ISU's colleges at the time the festival started in 1922: Veterinary Medicine, Engineering, Industrial Science, Home Economics, and Agriculture.

After clearing our weekend, we were set and on the road to Ames!

It never felt better to see our old stomping grounds (which reminds me we didn't get to go to Stomping Grounds while we were there! Shoot. Next time.)

Then we got to see our goodie bag in our hotel room! SWEET! I love free stuff. Can you tell what is in those goodie bags by the way? Look closely. Back to that in a minute. 

I have to say, the team that arranged this VIP package and coordinated with me was great. I sent them photos of our weekend and they were all so great and excited for us. If you are an ISU alum, you should totally join the alumni association :) They didn't ask me to say that by the way, they were just great. 

Back to those goodie bags above. Yep, they had Iowa State cherry pies in them! A serious ISU tradition since 1919. Amazing. I pretended they didn't have dairy and scarfed it. It was amazing. Like Iowa State in food form.

That Friday night, after scarfing our cherry pies, we headed to campus to grab dinner and check out the concerts!

Don't mind these poor quality phone photos.

The food vendors! Not many great dairy free options - let's say dairy was indeed consumed a few times that weekend (even in the form of CHEESE pizza! Ugh. Difficult food options + time crunch = goodbye dairy free). It didn't even taste as good as I'd been dreaming of for months now. 

The campanile all lit up that night.  

 Rocking out with Eric Hutchinson

We got our VIP badges at the dignitaries breakfast Saturday morning and a nice laminated reminder of our schedule for the day! We were pumped.

Here's ISU's new president, Steven Leath, as the keynote speaker at the breakfast.

Everyone settling in before the annual VEISHEA parade

It was a rainy morning, but fun was had by all.

Steven Leath was also the Grand Marshall of this year's VEISHEA parade. 

AND one of my very favorite ISU people, Coach Paul Rhoads encouraging the fans with a thumbs up. 

CY and I had a moment at the parade. He's clearly showing some love to this VIP winner.

Here's the basketball team. I was hoping to find Royce White there, but he must've been busy in the big leagues. 

Here's another one of my favorite ISU people, Jeff Johnson. He was a TOTAL highlight of our day. He sat at our table at the dignitary breakfast and talked with us for at least thirty minutes. It was SO COOL! He's basically the top guy in charge of the Alumni Association - he told us about his doctoral studies, his huge passion for keeping alumni connected to their roots, and let us into his life for a short time. If you've been to ISU games, he's also one to get the crowd chanting and riled up - he's got a zest for life and for ISU that I completely admire. 

Back to the parade, here's our pep band! Chanting along to our fight song brought back so many memories.

After the parade, we had to visit the campanile. I love the campanile. 

For old times sake, here's one of our engagement photos ('09) laying in front of the campanile:

After grabbing some quick lunch, we had to take a quick break from the schedule (things we had already done) to visit Nick's fraternity. They've done lots of remodeling the past few years so it was great to see. Although it made us feel so OLD since so many guys we (mostly Nick) know have graduated by now.

We enjoyed some more tours after that (some are totally free and you can schedule for yourself any time by the way!) and got to meet up with Rachel, Jared, Judah and baby Haven for dinner. 

We also snapped some photos on campus since we don't get to make it back that often.

Judah and the guys! He loved Nick and wasn't too far from him that night - it was too cute!

I also got to meet and squeeze Haven for the first time! She is SO darn adorable and has such soft skin.

Ohmygoodness, she was so sweet. How cute is that face??!

Good ol' Lake Lavern - seen from a different angle in our engagement picture here:

At the end of a packed day (it looks like it, HA!) with my VIP badge. I kind of want to wear it every day as I enjoyed being VIP status. It was SUCH a great day and a well needed break from the norm. By the way, have you seen VEISHEA's wikipedia page? It's pretty impressive to learn about the history of this event! I love being part of something big like that. Check it out here

It was a quick trip and Sunday morning we were on our way back to the Twin Cities as I had to work that afternoon! 

Is that the Bahamas?!? 

No.. it's Minnesota..

It was a gorgeous day. Hope there's many more where those come from this month!

I also skipped over Nick's birthday mid-April, but I got him this awesome beer glass set! It's a set of 6 and each shape is for a different kind of beer. He can have fun trying different beers in the mugs. I was glad he liked it, I think it's so cool!

I'll close with some Pinspiration as this spring continues to blossom with new growth.
You never know what tomorrow will bring.

1 comment:

Denise said...

Ya'll are so cute! And you look so bright and happy. It was clearly a great get away for you. I think it is so sweet that ya'll met in college, and can share these memories. So, did you ever learn how you were entered in this drawing? It certainly seems like a God sent gift.

Oh, by the way, you guys don't look any older in these current pictures compared to your engagement photos. I hope you are doing well. I'm sorry I haven't made time to call you. I really need to work on that, so look for a call in the near future.

I love and miss you! Take care!

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