Our traditions


Family Weekend

Every fall, the parents and families of our students visit our campus and experience life at our university during Family Weekend. Activities include:

  • live entertainment
  • a pre-game barbeque
  • a football game
  • casino night
  • a Sunday brunch

Greek Week

Greek Week, filled with activities and philanthropy projects, celebrates the community service inherent to our on-campus fraternities and sororities. The fraternities and sororities team up to win various Greek Week awards, and all money raised during the week is given to local and national charities.


During Homecoming, which has been a Northern Arizona University tradition since 1924, we welcome alumni back to campus to enjoy a week of activities.

Activities include:

  • bonfire and pep rally
  • alumni awards
  • Mr. Lumberjack pageant
  • Homecoming Dedicatee banquet
  • Homecoming Day parade
  • football game

Mr. Lumberjack Pageant

Male students compete in this mock beauty pageant to show their Homecoming pride. The winner:

  • receives an impressive prize package including a variety of gift certificates from local businesses
  • rides with the Kayettes in the Homecoming parade in downtown Flagstaff

Taylor Haunted House

The residents of the on-campus Taylor Hall don’t just put on the same old haunted house. Students and Flagstaff community members enjoy the Halloween magic while raising money for charity and participating in a canned food drive.

Holiday Week

Holiday Week, which occurs near the end of the fall semester, helps students enjoy the change in seasons and upcoming winter break. This festive week includes:

  • residence hall decorations
  • parties
  • luminaries that line the streets around campus
  • clothing and food drives
  • holiday dance


Gabaldon Hall, a residence hall on campus, has an outdoor party on their huge lawn every spring, and everyone at the university is invited. The event includes:

  • concerts
  • free food
  • prizes
  • carnival games

Student Athlete for a Day

Every year our student athletes pair up with an elementary school student for a day of bonding, inspirational talks, and physical activity. The Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) organizes this event to make kids aware of the importance of being a good student and community member.

Earth Day

Student athletes take it upon themselves to spend this day cleaning up campus and the areas around it.

Cultural traditions

Native American Heritage Celebrations

In the fall, various educational and cultural events sponsored by Native American student organizations focus on Native American heritage. One of them is the Miss Indian NAU Scholarship Pageant. The program:

  • promotes cultural awareness and understanding of tribal/indigenous nations
  • represents Native American students at the university
  • assists in strengthening the recruitment and retention of Native American college students

Asian-Pacific American Heritage Celebrations

This set of celebrations, sponsored by student organizations, focuses on Asian-Pacific heritage through various educational and cultural events.

African-American Heritage Celebrations

February is Black History Month. Sponsored by student organizations, it is a time to celebrate the contributions of African-Americans in the development of this country.  The month’s activities include:

  • performances
  • movies
  • lectures

Hispanic Heritage Celebrations

Sponsored by student organizations, this set of celebrations focus on the Hispanic heritage through various educational and cultural events.

For all of these celebrations, the dining halls make special arrangements to serve the foods unique to the occasion and culture.

Student Athlete Community Service

Our student athletes excel in their sports, their studies, and in the community. Last year, our athletes completed more than 4,500 hours of service. Some of those efforts include:

  • St. Mary's Food Bank
  • Flagstaff Marathon
  • Special Olympics Flyer Night at Chili's
  • United Way Kickoff
  • Campus Move In
  • Fit Kids of Arizona
  • Flagstaff Schools for Red Ribbon Week

True Blue Friday

On August 30, 2007, a Presidential Decree was signed proclaiming Friday of each and every work week ‘True Blue Friday.’ Students, faculty, staff, and the community show their pride by wearing Northern Arizona University gear that elevates school spirit while raising awareness of the university, its athletic teams, and partnership with the Flagstaff community.
Examples of True Blue Spirit can be seen at all athletic events, school activities, and even the True Blue mural in downtown Flagstaff that underscores the longstanding friendship and mutual support between the city and the university.

Be a part of this NAU tradition and get your gear at the NAU Bookstore and participating retailers.