July 6, 2020

Episode 12 - School Spirit

Today on This is Purdue you will hear about two nostalgic parts of Purdue’s history. First you will learn about Purdue’s most famous celebrity. This honor goes to Purdue’s “unofficial mascot”, Purdue Pete! This segment reveals some memories of multiple alumni that wore the Purdue Pete costume over the years. Dr. John Note was one of the first people to wear the Purdue Pete costume and is the first guest on today’s episode. The host explains how “Arthur Evans’ design is a powerful homage to Boilermaker craftsmen. Sporting a muscular physique, hard hat, and a mallet for hammering steel- this iconic logo was intended to signify strength and determination.”

You will hear some of the differences in Purdue Pete throughout the years. There are six students who share the role of Purdue Pete today. You will hear how they get trained and mentored for this important role. In 2016, many former Purdue Petes reunited to celebrate Purdue Pete’s history.

Another icon of Purdue is the Big Bass Drum. In 2021, the drum will have been around for 100 years! The drum was a dream of Purdue’s Band Director, Paul Spotts Emrick. One student explains how Emrick’s goal was to make the Purdue Band stand out. You will hear about the refinishing of the drum and the rivalry between Purdue and the University of Texas’ drum.

Key Ideas:

2:14 - The origin of Purdue Pete is explained. The origin began in University Bookstore in 1939.
3:34 - Purdue Pete appears for the first time in human form.
9:53 - Over thirty former Purdue Petes celebrated together in October 2016.
15:00 - The conversation turns to focus on Purdue’s Big Bass Drum.
16:41 - Purdue’s Big Bass Drum gets a facelift.



Learn more about This is Purdue

Learn more about Purdue University

Learn more about Purdue Pete

Learn more about Purdue’s Big Bass Drum

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Where to Watch

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