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Mining Minds: Special Lighting Celebrates Homecoming

Last Updated on October 02, 2017 at 12:00 AM

Originally published October 02, 2017

By UC Staff

UTEP Communications

The “Mining Minds” pickaxe sculpture at UTEP’s University Avenue roundabout will be illuminated in blue and orange through Saturday, Oct. 7, to celebrate the 2017 Homecoming festivities.

Mining Minds

The special lighting honors the University’s Homecoming tradition that began in 1929. This year’s Homecoming celebration will be a blast from the not-so-distant past with the student-selected theme – the ’90s – incorporated throughout the week’s festivities.

The week is filled with activities and events geared toward welcoming alumni and friends back to campus, engaging students and celebrating Miner pride.

UTEP students, alumni, faculty and staff are invited to come out and show their Miner spirit during the Homecoming Pep Rally from noon – 2 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 5 at Centennial Plaza. Members of the UTEP men’s football team will be in attendance as well as the UTEP pep band and a live DJ who will play ‘90s hits. There will be giveaways, food and free lunch for the first 500 Miners.

A past UTEP Homecoming tradition will make a comeback this year – the Homecoming Dance. UTEP students, alumni and community members are invited to attend the dance from 7-9:30 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 5 at Holiday Hall on the UTEP campus. Light food and beverages will be served and semi-formal attire is encouraged.

A ceremony celebrating the 100th Anniversary of Old Main will be held at 12:30 p.m., Friday, Oct. 6 at the outdoor entrance of the Old Main Building. UTEP president Diana Natalicio will speak about the history of the building. An open house will follow the ceremony.

The 2017 recipients of the Distinguished Alumni and Gold Nugget Awards will be recognized at the Distinguished Alumni Awards Dinner at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 6, hosted by the Office of Alumni Relations in the Don Haskins Center. For ticket information, call 915-747-6361 or visit

The UTEP Alumni Association together with the Miner Athletic Club will host the Biggest Tailgate in Town from 3-5:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 7 at Kidd Field. For ticket information, visit

The UTEP men’s football team will play Western Kentucky at 6 p.m., Oct. 7 at Sun Bowl Stadium. Inner campus tailgates may start at 2 p.m. while outer lots may begin at 8 a.m. For more information on tailgating rules and regulations, visit

For more information and a full schedule of Homecoming events and festivities, visit the official UTEP 2017 Homecoming website at

“Mining Minds” is an iconic piece of public art installed in 2010 to enhance the UTEP campus. At night, orange lights illuminate the steel structure while light from LEDs emanate from the perforated “ones” and “zeroes” at each end of the pick.

On special occasions, including historic dates, major annual milestones and to celebrate special accomplishments, the pick is illuminated in blue and orange.