A ‘Warm’ Welcome from the Valley of the Sun Alumni Club (Thursday, July 22)

Phoenix Notre Dame Club

We drove from Denver, Colorado to Flagstaff, Arizona on Wednesday night. Prior to making the trip down to Phoenix on Thursday, we could not help but swing by the Grand Canyon—what a spectacular sight! This evening we had a wonderful night with the Phoenix Notre Dame Club. Cindy and Mike Parseghian drove up from Tucson to join the club event, which was held at the Sandbar Mexican Restaurant. We appreciate all Maggie and the club did to organize the event and are grateful for all who showed up to wish us well on our journey and support the Ara Parseghian Medical Research Foundation’s efforts. Alumni brought in Notre Dame memorabilia, the Notre Dame Club of Phoenix banners were proudly displayed, and gold and blue balloons finished up the décor. Quite the ND feeling! About 25 members came to wish us well. Knowing that the other clubs are competing for the best rendition of the fight song, the Phoenix club sang the entire song—not just the “cheer, cheer” verse—and they finished with the alma mater. Cindy Parseghian addressed the club before the members swarmed out to the parking lot to see and sign the van.


We have one more day before we head out on our bikes. Tomorrow night is the send-off event in Tucson and then we are off!

When you speak to Notre Dame alumni, as we have done a lot in the past week, you keep hearing about the special nature of our University. When we were thinking of moving to South Bend two years ago, friends would ask: what is so special about Notre Dame? Now that I have been here for a while, and especially since I have had the chance to visit so many alumni clubs around the country this past week, I know the answer: it’s the love that Notre Dame inspires. While they are still on campus and no matter how long they have been away, the students and alumni share a rare passion and enthusiasm for their alma mater. Of course, this manifests itself a lot from a number of perspectives, for example when the talk turns to football, but it goes much deeper than that. We have noticed that alumni, proudly decked out in their Notre Dame gear wherever they are in the country, do not talk so much about their majors or their departments. They want to talk about their personal experiences, the life-long friendships they’ve made and the fond memories that have forged this remarkable camaraderie and unity. Their years at Notre Dame, no matter how long ago or far away, are a special experience that will last their entire lives.

Good night from Tucson. Go Irish.

6 Comments so far

  1.    Katerina and Ryan Lichtenwalter on July 24th, 2010

    Good luck on your first day, Greg and Renate! Be safe! We’ll be thinking about you guys today.

  2.    Your Oldest Daughter on July 25th, 2010

    Keep it up!!! We miss you already, love you
    p.s. Oma wishes you guys best of luck as well.

  3.    Pam on July 25th, 2010

    Anxiously awaiting a report on your first day

  4.    anneke on July 25th, 2010

    Good job so far. Keep it up! We are following you. Hope you meet a lot of great people and have nice weather. Love, Anneke

  5.    Brian McDonald on July 28th, 2010

    It was great to see you in Phoenix and wish you well on your journey. Here is your Irish blessing to get some tailwinds!
    An Old Irish Blessing
    May the road rise up to meet you.
    May the wind always be at your back.
    May the sun shine warm upon your face,
    and rains fall soft upon your fields.
    And until we meet again,
    May God hold you in the palm of His hand.
    GO IRISH! Beat Niemann-Pick!

  6.    shannon harrington on July 29th, 2010

    Good luck from all your workout buddies at Knollwood! We are very proud of you guys!