What the Flock is the Flamingle?
The Flamingle is a new, weekly newsletter created just for UW–Madison alumni. It’s quick, fun, and easy to read, making it the best way to reconnect you to campus. Each Friday, we curate and share a handful of the week’s top stories about campus and the surrounding community — from the quirky to the academic and everything in between. You’ll also get the latest installment of our column “Ask Abe,” which takes a look into campus quirks, traditions, and history. In short, the Flamingle lets you revel in everything you love about the UW.
So, why the Flamingle? Excellent question! On the morning of September 4, 1979, students trudging up Bascom Hill to their morning classes wiped the sleep from their eyes to see the entire hill turned pink. The Pail & Shovel Party, led by legendary jokesters James Mallon ’79 and Leon Varjian, “planted” 1,008 plastic pink flamingos on the Bascom lawn as a victory stunt after winning the student government elections. The flamingo stunt did more than give UW–Madison a reputation of “inspired goofiness.” It also solidified the bird as a campus and Madison icon: in 2009, the plastic pink flamingo became the official city bird.
Here at the Wisconsin Alumni Association® (WAA), we believe in helping all alumni stay tapped into the inspired goofiness of UW–Madison. So come on. Flamingle with us.
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What’s the most common type of tree on the UW campus?See Abe's Answer >
See if you can spot which of the following names belonged to real people associated with the UW over 100 years ago.Read More >
When did red-and-white-striped overalls become a thing?See Abe's Answer >
Every corner of the UW campus is covered in red and white. Can you look at these close-up photos of spirited stripes and tell what they are?Read More >
What happened to the huge bass drum I used to see with the band?See Abe's Answer >