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Film Premiere, Fireworks and More to Kick off Mount St. Mary's Universityís
 Bicentennial Celebration

(8/20) Mount St. Maryís Universityís year-long Bicentennial festivities include a public celebration on August 24. All events that day are free. Parking will be limited on Main Campus and some may be directed to park on East Campus.

Events include a Founderís Mass, the unveiling of a Bicentennial timeline and the dedication and blessing of a new Founderís Plaza. Centrally located on campus, the plaza includes a twice-life size statue of Fr. John DuBois, who founded the school in 1808. Created by internationally-known sculptor Bill Hopen, the bronze recreates the moment the French ťmigrť priest planted a cross on the mountainside, establishing the school that would play an integral role in Maryland and beyond.

The university will also premiere its new high-definition documentary, The Spirit Continues, which details the Mountís rich history.

"The Spirit Continues is more than a story about one university," says Mount President Thomas H. Powell. "Itís about how history shapes all of us≠how what happened here in Maryland was a reflection of what was going on in the broader world. I think viewers will be surprised at what they learn about the Mount, for example, thereís a Civil War reenactment in the film, and saints have walked these grounds." Produced by Virginia Wolf Productions and MVI Post, the film took almost three years to finish and will air on public broadcast television later this year.

Fireworks with the golden statue of Mary as a backdrop will cap off the dayís celebrations. Zambelli, one of the oldest and largest American fireworks companies, will provide the spectacular pyrotechnics. The magic of Zambelli pyrotechnics has been televised around the world, on "MSNBC Investigates", the Odyssey Network, the Discovery Channel, The Learning Channel and the British Broadcasting Company.

Bicentennial events planned throughout the year include academic symposia, a coffee table book, and celebratory galas in New York City and Maryland. The Maryland Symphony Orchestra is planning a free concert at the Mount in the spring of 2008 to coincide with a university Bicentennial stamp card dedication. A new student residence, Bicentennial Hall, is planned to open in 2008.

In addition to the undergraduate university, the Mount includes one of the countryís largest and most successful Catholic seminaries, graduate programs in business, education and theology, and the National Shrine Grotto of Lourdes.

August 24 Schedule:

  • 11:00 a.m. Mass, Chapel of the Immaculate Conception, Most Rev. Kevin C. Rhoades, bishop of Harrisburg
  • 2:00 p.m. Bicentennial Timeline Ribbon Cutting, McGowan Center
  • 4:00 p.m. Founderís Plaza Dedication
  • 6:00 p.m. The Spirit Continues, Knott Auditorium
  • 7:15 p.m. The Spirit Continues, Knott Auditorium
  • 8:30 p.m. The Spirit Continues, Knott Auditorium
  • 9:30 p.m. Fireworks (weather permitting)

For more information about these and upcoming Bicentennial events, please contact the Office of Communications at (301)447-5366

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