Utah Tech University, community to celebrate 110 years of tradition during annual D-Week

ST. GEOGRE, Utah — Utah Tech University students, alumni and the community will come together to celebrate the rich history and traditions of the university and entire Southern Utah region during the 110th annual D-Week during the second week of April.

D-Week, a spirit week similar to Homecoming that brings its own set of activities to the university’s spring semester, dates back to 1915, when the student body constructed the D on the Hill. The spirit week bears the same name to honor the longstanding traditions this week still includes.

“D-week provides such a unique opportunity for our campus and community to share in celebrating long-standing and new traditions,” Isabelle Peck, events and promotions assistant at Utah Tech, said. “We are excited to host one of my favorite events, Brooks’ Block Party, in the downtown area because it is the perfect way to bring the Trailblazer Spirit into the community.”

D-Week 2024 will kick off with the block party on April 8 from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Main Street alley in downtown St. George. Brooks’ Block Party will feature local business vendors, food trucks, musicians and artists creating a fun street fest environment to celebrate the birthday of the university’s mascot, Brooks the Bison. Brooks was unveiled during D-Week 2016, when the Trailblazers athletic identity was launched.

The festivities will continue with the annual Trailblazer Queen Pageant, where Utah Tech students will display their commitment to service, community involvement and academic achievement. The pageant begins at 7:30 p.m. on April 9 in the Main Stage Theater of the Eccles Fine Arts Center, and general admission is $10.

Then for 36 hours on April 9 and 10, Trailblazer Nation will unite during the university’s Days of Giving to make a lasting impact on UT students by donating to a variety of initiatives and efforts at utahtech.edu/day-of-giving

As part Art in the City Tour, featured bison statues throughout St. George will host pop-up parties with free giveaways from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on April 11. More details on where prizes will be given will be available on @utahtechu Instagram account’s stories on April 11.

The following day, The Great Race, another longstanding tradition of D-Week, is set to start at 5 p.m. on April 12 in Greater Zion Stadium. Dating back to a 1960s bike race through St. George, the Great race morphed into a 10-person relay team that included motor crossing, horseback riding across Foremaster Ridge and tubing down the Virgin River in the early 1970s before it moved to campus in 2000. In its current form, the Great Race still features relay teams of 10 as they run, pedal, swim, scoot and slide their way through the infamous mud pit to the finish line. All ages can join in the race, and community members are encouraged to participate. Pre-registration is required at utahtech.edu/dweek.

Following The Great Race, the annual D-Week Carnival will offer carnival games, inflatables and concessions from 6 to 8:30 p.m. on the Encampment Mall.

To wrap up D-Week, students, alumni and community members are invited to paint the “D” on the Hill at 8 a.m. on April 13 as part of a tradition that has been held since 1915. Breakfast will be served after a fresh coat of paint has been added to the “D” overlooking the community.

Later that evening, the annual Alumni Awards Ceremony will be held at 6 p.m. on April 13 in the Zion Room, on the fifth floor of the Holland Centennial Commons on the UT campus. As part of the celebratory evening, the 2024 alumni awardees will be honored. Anthony McMullin will be awarded the Rising Alumni Award; Brandon and Becky Staples will be awarded the Distinguished Alumni Award; and the Wittwer family will be bestowed the Lifetime Achievement Award. RSVP is required and available at utahtech.edu/alumniawards.

For more information about Utah Tech University’s D-Week events, visit utahtech.edu/dweek.