KEARNEY – The University of Nebraska at Kearney throws a big party when welcoming students to campus each August. Among the highlights is the popular Destination Downtown, where UNK and businesses roll out the red carpet and offer entertainment, giveaways and other events.
The longtime success of the downtown summer event prompted UNK organizers to create a similar outing to welcome students back to campus for the spring semester. UNK and Hilltop Mall are partnering to host Destination Uptown from 8 to 10 p.m. Wednesday (Jan. 17).
The first-year event is part of UNK’s January Jamboree celebration, the university’s official welcome to new and returning students.
“We wanted to add something for students starting fresh in the spring because we haven’t done anything special for them in the past,” said Brette Ensz, assistant director of First Year Program. “People love Destination Downtown, so we thought we could host a similar event this winter and create a fun atmosphere at Hilltop Mall.”
Destination Uptown will include roaming musicians throughout the mall, store discounts, prize giveaways, a caricature artist, games and other activities. A number of other activities are planned at UNK as part of January Jamboree. They include:
UNK JANUARY JAMBOREE
Tuesday, Jan. 16
5 p.m. – Loper Bingo with free groceries for winners (Louie’s Diner)
7 p.m. – “Life and Legacy of Martin Luther King Jr.,” with speaker Elwood Watson (Student Union, Ponderosa)
Wednesday, Jan. 17
8 to 10 p.m. – Destination Uptown: live music, giveaways, store discounts, games and more (Hilltop Mall)
10 p.m. – $5 movie with free popcorn, “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” (Hilltop 4 Theatre)
Thursday, Jan. 18
5:30 p.m. – Women’s basketball vs Northwest Missouri State (Health and Sports Center)
7:30 p.m. – Men’s basketball vs Northwest Missouri State (Health and Sports Center)
8 p.m. – Hypnotist Jim Wand (Student Union, Ponderosa)
Saturday, Jan. 20
2 p.m. – Women’s basketball vs Missouri Western (Health and Sports Center)
4 p.m. – Men’s basketball vs Missouri Western State (Health and Sports Center)
Wednesday, Jan. 24
4 p.m. – Stalking Awareness Panel: Kearney Police Department, SAFE Center, UNK Police (Student Union, Ponderosa)
8 to 10 p.m. – Bowling and Laser Tag (Big Apple Fun Center)
Thursday, Jan. 25
7 p.m. – Intramural 10-point Pitch Tournament (Mantor Hall Lounge)