Seniors Get Their Rings! Freshmen Get General Leave!
0830-1300: Pre-ordered Parents’ Weekend t-shirts and tote bags pickup on the second floor of Mark Clark Hall – click here to order. We do not have many shirts or totes left to sell due to the robust pre-order sales. Last day to pre-order was September 21st.
1030: The Citadel Family Association (CFA) Annual Meeting featuring General Walters providing an update to Parents and Families – located in Buyer Auditorium, Second Floor of Mark Clark Hall.
1445: Seniors March to the Chapel for the Ring Presentation Ceremony. For those who want to watch, please don’t not block the Avenue of Remembrance – that road needs to remain open to traffic until the Seniors arrive.
1500: Class of 2024 Ring Presentation Ceremony – Summerall Chapel – Cadets only – lasts about an hour and a half. Click here for the livestreaming platform. When the Seniors leave the Chapel they will render honors to the War Memorial then head to their respective company areas.
1700: Ring Reception – Deas Hall – this is the staging area for those going through the ring. We recommend families arrive about 30 minutes ahead of your cadet’s company’s scheduled time. When it comes time to get in line, those family members not walking through the ring may go and take a seat in McAlister Fieldhouse.
1800: Ring Walk-Through Ceremony and Sword Arch Performance – McAlister Fieldhouse – Click Here to find the Special Instructions for this event and what time your cadet’s company is scheduled to go through the ring. Don’t forget that the Clear Bag Policy will be in effect.
Make sure you and your cadet coordinate when and where you will meet. Note: the General Leave schedule at the bottom of the page, Upperclassmen can leave as early as after their last class. Freshmen can leave after their last duty which could be before or after lunch. Make sure they know how – and ask them – to contact you in case they are delayed or if they are going to take a nap or change the plan!
0700: Starbucks and Chick-fil-A are open for those who come early to get a good parking spot.
0900-1300: Pre-ordered and sales of Parents’ Day t-shirts and tote bags. We’ll be located on the second floor of Mark Clark Hall – right outside the auditorium where the CFA Meeting will take place. If you placed an order, you (or your cadet) just have to show up. Our pre-order sales went very well so we have very few remaining that we can sell. Come up anyway and say hello.
1030-1145: The CFA Annual Meeting featuring the President’s Update to Parents – Buyer Auditorium in Mark Clark Hall. CFA Chair, Chellie Blondes, will call the meeting to order at 1030 sharp! First order of business will be to have General Walters and his senior staff provide an update on the College to the Membership (which is made up of all parents). As your Cadet’s advisor, it is a great way to find out what his top issues are for the school and then ask any questions you may have – don’t be shy!
1145-1445: Lunch: For the parents and families of Junior and Sophomore Cadets, you may want to find out when your Cadet is able to leave campus before deciding whether to eat on campus or not. Many may want to depart as soon as possible and eat somewhere off campus. While there are quick off campus options, Freshmen and Senior parents waiting for their cadets can take advantage of the following eating locations on Campus:
1) The Canteen which includes a Chick-fil-A and sandwich/salad bar – located in Mark Clark Hall.
2) The full-service Starbucks located in Mark Clark Hall.
3) The coffee shop in Daniel Library – Starbucks drinks and sandwiches.
4) Bring a lunch to tailgate from the car.
Regardless of what year your cadet is, having a plan of when and where you will meet makes the day a lot more enjoyable. Make sure you discuss this with your cadet before the day’s events – that plan should include how they will let you know if they need to change to the plan.
For Freshmen families, your cadet may leave after their last military duty. You will need to coordinate with them when that will be. You will find most want to eat and sleep. It is good to get them back a little earlier than the expiration of leave, so you can get some rest – Saturday is a big day for everyone!
Ring Presentation Ceremony: Although Parents and Families will not be allowed in the Chapel, you are welcome to watch them march across the parade field to the Chapel and leave after the ceremony – just make sure you are watching the time if you intend to go to back to the hotel before the evening ceremony – traffic can be terrible on Friday afternoons.
1700 through the evening: The Ring Reception – Senior families only. Although all family members are invited, the main purpose is to serve as the staging area for the cadets and those they will be escorting through the ring. There will be food and drinks available, but not enough to serve as a meal. Make sure you read the Special Instructions. You should arrive based on the time your cadet’s company is scheduled to walk through the ring – early enough to get in line – we recommend at least 30 minutes before – see the schedule below. Also, please be patient, sometimes there are delays. Don’t let that ruin a wonderful evening with your cadet! Since the family will be all dressed up, you may want to take advantage of a photo op with large ring on the other side of campus that will be displaying the shiny new “24” on it.
1800: The Sword Arch Performance and Walk Through Ring Ceremony in McAlister Field House. To honor the Seniors, the Sword Arch team will present a precision performance then remain on station to provide an arch of swords for each Senior passing through the ring. This is a culmination of hard work and dedication. Please be in your seats before 1800 as there will be no movement during the presentation. This will be a chaotic time for Senior families, so we recommend that all families consider attending the performance before your cadet is a senior. Again, this performance is open to everyone.
1815: Cadets and their special guests will begin their walk through the Ring starting with the Regimental Commander, Senior Class President, Regimental Activities Officer and the Ring Chairman. At 1820 the Senior football players (need to get them to bed for the game the next day) and Active Duty Seniors will make their walk.
As a reminder, especially for the earlier folks, Charleston traffic is at its worst on Friday afternoons. Please plan to get to McAlister Fieldhouse early. If you miss your time slot, you go to the back of the line and will go through after the last company.
For Parents and Families of Seniors, this is a fairly formal event. When considering what to wear, keep in mind your cadet will be wearing their most formal uniform for this ceremony. Recommend Googling “images of The Citadel Ring Walkthrough Ceremony” to get an idea of what most people wear.
Ring Walkthrough Times by Company
Finally, tell your Cadet to be prepared to introduce you to the VIPs (General and Mrs. Walters, The Provost and Colonel and Mrs. Gordon) at some point that evening. They have been trained how to do this. Over the past three years they have developed a habit of avoiding the Commandant . . . but this night, there is only one way out!
Upperclassmen: After their last class until 0100. Seniors get an overnight!
Freshmen: After their last official duty after lunch until midnight (2400).