Women’s athletics got going at what was then known as Ferris State College in the 1970’s, and around 70 former athletes, coaches, administrators and supporters gathered at Hemlock Park in Big Rapids Saturday, July 16 for a reunion.
Former Ferris coaches Monica Folske and Pat Dolan organized the event, and Dolan said she was pleased by the turnout, which included women athletes from the early 70s to 1994.
“I think it was tremendous,” Dolan said. “It was delightful to get back in touch with people I’d coached, and people who supported the program. There were people who were walking up to one another, who hadn’t seen each other in as much as 40 years.”
Among the athletes attending was Val Stark Rauschenberger, who began her career as a basketball player, and was recruited to captain the inaugural Bulldog women’s golf team.
“I have always been faithful to Ferris, and I have to give Pat and Monica credit for bringing us together after all this time,” Rauschenberger said. “It’s been great.”
Dolan said it was appropriate to savor the opportunity before them, rather than stake a claim for another reunion during the celebration.
“These athletes remember the people they played with, the people who helped them through troubles, their smiles, and hugs,” Dolan said. “There’s no way you could place a value on that.”
Ted Halm, John Smith and Jonathan Yordy of the University Advancement and Marketing staff were on hand to meet, and congratulate those in attendance.