University News

WIU's Purple and Gold Day April 24

April 19, 2013

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MACOMB/MOLINE, IL -- Western Illinois University will celebrate Purple and Gold Day Wednesday, April 24, and members of the University community are encouraged to wear the colors to express their school spirit.

The Purple and Gold Day celebration began April 24, 2000, when the University closed its year-long 100-year celebration with the "Centennial Finale: A Celebration of Purple and Gold." That date in 2000 marked 100 years to the day (April 24, 1899) that the Illinois Legislature approved the creation of Western Illinois University, then Western Illinois State Normal School.

At the ceremony, Western's Board of Trustees then-Chair Lorraine Epperson read a proclamation declaring April 24 as "Purple and Gold Day." According to the proclamation, the founding fathers of Western selected the colors of purple and gold "due to the vast golden prairie strewn with purple coneflowers," to symbolize this University in color.

"To celebrate the marking of a new era at Western Illinois University in Macomb, the University community wishes to establish a tradition that builds on the history of WIU and the pride that is felt by the alumni, faculty and students," the proclamation continued. April 24 of each year will mark "Purple and Gold Day" at WIU.

Posted By: WIU News (
Office of University Relations