Burton Tower lighting project to be unveiled for UMich200 Spring Festival | Arts & Culture

Burton Tower lighting project to be unveiled for UMich200 Spring Festival

Burton Tower lighting project to be unveiled for UMich200 Spring Festival

The University of Michigan will unveil a new lighting system for Burton Tower as part of U-M’s year-long Bicentennial celebration. Photo by Scott Soderberg, Michigan Photography.

In celebration of the University of Michigan’s 200th year, the iconic Burton Tower will glow in new maize and blue lighting for the UMich200 Bicentennial Spring Festival.

Starting the week of April 3, the tower will be illuminated in white lights. The lights will transition to maize and blue and end with a multimedia light show supporting the “True Blue! A Tribute to Michigan” event at Hill Auditorium April 8.

The floodlights were replaced late last year with a new system that illuminates the tower from within, with more than 100 LED bulbs that can be programmed in various colors. The new system will create a subtle white glow from within the tower by highlighting the Baird Carillon bells and the openings at the top.

U-M's Burton Tower will be lit for special Bicentennial events during the remainder of 2017. Photo by Scott Soderberg, Michigan Photography.

U-M’s Burton Tower will be lit for special Bicentennial events during the remainder of 2017. Photo by Scott Soderberg, Michigan Photography.

A $1 million fund was created to install, operate and maintain the new lighting. Leadership donors Ron and Eileen Weiser established a $500,000 challenge grant. Their friends Paul Dimond, John Carver and Tim Wadhams solicited gifts of $25,000 each from alumni, faculty and members of the community, matched dollar for dollar by the challenge.

The Lighting Practice from Philadelphia served as the project consultant. The firm has designed lighting for such prominent structures as the Empire State Building in New York City and the U.S. Capitol Dome in Washington, D.C.

Programming for Burton Tower’s lights will be managed jointly between the President’s Office, the Office of the Vice President for Communications and the U-M School of Music, Theatre and Dance.

For 2017, the lights will specifically celebrate events and dates related to U-M’s bicentennial. Plans for post-2017 programming will likely be scheduled around special university events and celebrations, including game days, anniversaries and memorials.

Scheduled dates for 2017 include:

  • UMich200 Spring Festival: April 3-8
  • U-M Spring Commencement: April 27-30
  • UMich200 Summer Festival: June 25-July 1
  • U-M’s official birthday: Aug. 26-27
  • UMich200 Fall Festival: Oct. 22-28
  • U-M Winter Commencement: Dec. 11-17

All lighting will be programmed to begin at dusk and end at midnight.

UMich200 Bicentennial Spring Festival

 

THURSDAY, APRIL 6

Stumbling BlocksCentral Campus, Medical Campus and North Campus
Pop-up art installations draw attention to missteps and challenges from U-M’s past: the Native American land gift of 1817; the role of women; affirmative action; student protest; biomedical research in a global context; national security and war; and the role of staff. The displays are a feature of the President’s Bicentennial Colloquium, “The Future University Community.”

Flag raising ceremony, 8 a.m., Central Campus flagpole
Commemorating the 100th anniversary of the United States’ entry into World War I and the service of U-M students and faculty. Students from U-M Reserve Officers’ Training Corps units – Army, Navy and Air Force – will participate.

Welcome Center and Book Station, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Michigan League Concourse (2nd floor)
Enjoy light refreshments and learn about festival events. Faculty and staff will receive the book, “Always Leading, Forever Valiant,” an engaging look at the history of the University of Michigan on its 200th birthday. The well-illustrated stories celebrate the progressive vision, dedicated individuals, and groundbreaking moments that helped forge the institution that the University is today.

Note: Current faculty and staff are eligible for one complimentary copy with their Mcard. Books also will be for sale at a discounted price by the University of Michigan Press.

A-maizing Building Tours, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
Behind-the-scenes tours of historical and unique campus landmarks, including the Central Power Plant (1914), Michigan Union (1919), Hatcher Graduate Library (1920) and Michigan League (1929).

The Research University and Society: Five U-M Presidents on 40 Years of History, 4:30-6 p.m., Rackham Auditorium
Former U-M Presidents Harold T. Shapiro (1980-87), James J. Duderstadt (1988-1996), Lee C. Bollinger (1996-2001) and Mary Sue Coleman (2002-2014) will join President Mark Schlissel in a bicentennial conversation about the past and future of Michigan and higher education. The discussion is a feature of the President’s Bicentennial Colloquium, “The Evolving Bargain between Research Universities and Society.” It is free and open to the public, and will be livestreamed here. Reception to follow.

Learn more here about Presidents Shapiro, Duderstadt, Bollinger and Coleman.

Feast of Ideas, 6-9 p.m., various locations
An intellectual sampler of U-M’s academic excellence, with faculty from diverse disciplines presenting 20-minute talks at Ann Arbor shops, restaurants and galleries.

FRIDAY, APRIL 7

Stumbling Blocks, Central Campus, Medical Campus and North Campus
Pop-up art installations draw attention to missteps and challenges from U-M’s past: the Native American land gift of 1817; the role of women; affirmative action; student protest; biomedical research in a global context; national security and war; and the role of staff. The displays are a feature of the President’s Bicentennial Colloquia, “The Future University Community.”

Tree planting ceremony, 11:30 a.m., Diag
An elm sapling will be added to Central Campus to mark the bicentennial and continue the legacy of plantings started in the 1850s that gave the Diag its physical character.

Interactive Carillon Concert, noon-12:30 p.m., Burton Memorial Tower
A lunchtime performance will showcase the 53 bells of historic Charles Baird Carillon. Before the concert, visit jukebells.com to select the piece you want to hear; results will be tallied and performed in real time by University Carillonist Tiffany Ng.

A-maizing Building Tours, 9 a.m.-10:30 p.m.
Behind-the-scenes tours of historical and unique campus landmarks, including the Detroit Observatory (1854), Central Power Plant (1914), Martha Cook Building (1915), Michigan Union (1919), Clements Library (1923), Michigan League (1929), Burton Memorial Tower (1936), Hatcher Graduate Library (1920), Rackham Graduate School (1938).

Community of Cultures Festival, 3-6 p.m., Pierpont Commons and Duderstadt Center
A celebration of U-M’s diversity and an intersection of culture, art, and social advocacy through more than 25 cultural student organizations. Activities will engage the five senses and include a special culminating unity moment. Student organizations include La Salud, Maize Mirchi, Assisting Latin@s to Maximize Achievement, Michigan Refugee Assistance Program, Students of Color in Public Policy and more. For directions and parking information, please click here.

SATURDAY, APRIL 8

Stumbling Blocks, Central Campus, Medical Campus and North Campus
Pop-up art installations draw attention to missteps and challenges from U-M’s past: the Native American land gift of 1817; the role of women; affirmative action; student protest; biomedical research in a global context; national security and war; and the role of staff. The displays are a feature of the President’s Bicentennial Colloquia, “The Future University Community.”

True Blue! A Tribute To Michigan, 7 p.m., Hill Auditorium
James Earl Jones, Darren Criss, Sanjay Gupta, Andrea Joyce and Cecilia Muñoz are among the distinguished alumni who will join U-M students and faculty in a live multi-media performance celebrating Michigan’s 200 years. Public reception to follow immediately afterward on Ingalls Mall.

*For the complete array of activities taking place during the UMich200 Spring Festival, please visit the Bicentennial Calendar.