The George Mason Statue – Decorating
George can often be found holding green and yellow balloons or adorned in Mason gear. Student groups compete for the opportunity to dress and decorate George. Recognized student organizations, academic departments, and university offices may fill out a request to decorate George to promote an event or events they are sponsoring or to highlight a special achievement.
The George Mason Statue – Toe Rubbing
Another statue tradition is to rub George’s toe for good luck before an exam!
The George Mason Statue – Picture Taking
Have you officially graduated if you haven’t had your photo taken at the statue, preferably in cap and gown? Why take the chance. Traffic is heavy around the statue during Commencement season. There are usually lines of people waiting to snap the family posed in front of George.
There was once a time in the history of the university when all we had for a gathering place was the Quad in front of Fenwick Library. For years student organizations have painted those benches that line the walkway to gain recognition for their group. With more than 300 student organizations, the competition for these benches is fierce. Painting takes place in the spring.
It has been more than a decade since the university moved our Homecoming to February (yes, February) so we can celebrate with basketball. There are sometimes flurries and bitter temps, but we do love our men’s basketball team so it is worth it. A certain other school in the Colonial Athletic Association now also has a winter homecoming. Coincidence? We think not.
George Mason University has been celebrating Mason Day since before we were a independent university. It began in 1965 as the Mason’s version of University of Virginia’s Founders Day, which celebrated Thomas Jefferson’s birthday on April 13th. It has grown and shrunk over the years, and moved all over campus. But it has always featured music at the main attraction. At its peak it was a weekend-long festival that had folks camping out on the Quad. Now it take place in one of the outer parking lots and included food like funnel cakes and amusement park rides, in addition to the bands.
Mason vs. James Madison Rivalry
The Patriots and Dukes, located just 95 miles apart, annually meet head to head to compete in 16 sports. Both schools are members of the 12-school Colonial Athletic Association.
With students from many local high schools attending the two universities, the matches offer opportunities for friendly competition between former classmates and often serve as natural high school reunions. As one of the best in-state rivalries, Mason and James Madison basketball games are hard to match in spirit and intensity. After a James Madison loss, Mason students can be heard chanting “66 West, 81 South” in reference to how the losers drive home.