Breanna Dittert, English freshman, prepares a rock for the Moundbuilding Ceremony. Dittert assisted with multiple rocks, including one for campus organization Sigma Tau Delta, the English honor society organization. (Tessa Castor/Staff photographer)
Kaydee Riggs-Johnson, vice president for marketing and communications, paints a rock for Southwestern's communications office. Members of the communications office were seen around the Rock Painting Party, photographing and videoing the event. (Tessa Castor/Staff photographer)
Lori Gragert, early childhood education senior, and Alyssa Patrick, music education sophomore, paint a rock for the EdBuilders organization. EdBuilders is a campus organization for students pursuing teaching degrees. (Tessa Castor/Staff photographer)
Beth Jewett, accounting senior, poses with her dog, Lilly, at Tuesday's Rock Painting Party. Jewett painted many rocks, and she will throw in rocks dedicated to Student Government Association, Lilly and her late best friend and roommate, Kara McLain. (Tessa Castor/Staff photographer)
Reid Green, religion and philosophy junior, spray paints a golf ball to be thrown in the Mound. This will be Green's third Moundbuilding Ceremony. (Tessa Castor/Staff photographer)
Miranda Nelson, marine biology senior, grabs paint to be used on a rock for the Moundbuilding Ceremony. (Tessa Castor/Staff photographer)
Alex Ritzema, physical performance and sports studies senior, spray paints the softball team rock. The softball team, along with other sports teams and campus organizations, will throw their decorated rocks into the Mound Thursday night, as per tradition of the Moundbuilding Ceremony. (Tessa Castor/Staff photographer)

By Tessa Castor
Staff reporter

Students gathered on the Wallingford Lawn Tuesday evening for the annual Rock Painting Party, an event hosted by Student Life to prepare for the Moundbuilding Ceremony. Dozens of students gathered with their organizations, sports teams and friends and painted rocks to be thrown in the Mound.

The 91st annual Moundbuilding Ceremony will take place Thursday at 7 p.m. at the Mound, located south of Mossman Hall. Students, staff and community members alike are invited to attend the event, and they are welcome to throw a rock in as well.

Dean Allen, the ceremony’s founder in 1927, said this of the Moundbuilding Ceremony:

“Let each student come forward, and instructor too, and in token of his desire to build his heart and life and spirit into his alma mater, press the stone on which he has written his name into the soft cement that shall bind the while together. It shall remain there, wrapped up as a token between him and his alma mater that they understand one another and are united forever.”

Tessa Castor is a junior majoring in English. You may email her at