Illini Dads Association plans for games, fundraisers


Photo Courtesy of Illini Dads Association

Illini Dads Association is a group that organized all of the Dads Weekend activities each year. The group also offers scholarships and donates to several clubs on campus.

By Arden Youn, Contributing Writer

Joe Gainer is the president of the Illini Dads Association.  The association is a group of University students who plan all of the activities for Dads Weekend. Gainer is an alumnus and will remain president for the rest of the year.

Daily Illini: For freshmen who don’t know, can you briefly describe what Dads Weekend is?
Joe Gainer: It’s an opportunity for dads to come and visit with their children. It’s probably really geared a lot towards freshmen, not just freshmen, but a lot. It’s an opportunity for dads to spend some time with their kids.

DI: Why is Dads Weekend at the beginning of November?

JG: Typically, we have it in November so the kids have been in school for at least 2 1/2 months. It gives them the chance to get acclimated to school and then for the dads to spend time with the kids.

DI: How has your perception of the celebration been affected by being in the association?

    Sign up for our newsletter!

    JG: I am very proud of the fact that we sponsor events, and it kind of gives the dads and kids activities to do. The result of the responses during the events also raises money for grants and scholarships, so there’s some philanthropy involved.

    DI: How does the association raise money for grants and scholarships?

    JG: We have a relationship with the athletic association, so we sell basketball tickets and football tickets for a discount. We also have a relationship with the Hockey Club, so we sell tickets at a discount and same with the brunch and the concert. We make a little bit of profit on those, so as a result, it’s basically a fundraiser event. We get to sponsor scholarships for registered student organizations and students at the University.

    DI: What can we expect from this year? Is there going to be anything new or different?
    JG: It’s going to be a little bit different. There’s going to be hockey and basketball games that give the dads a chance to come and see the completely refurbished State Farm Center. One thing that is also changed is that last year’s concert was a Beatles tribute band, but this year, one of the guys on the board has a daughter in an a cappella group. The people are very interested in hearing them, so we changed the concert to three student a cappella groups. We were able to lower the price and make a little more money.

    Arden is a freshman in Business.

    [email protected]