Alumni House Reception Center

The Alumni House Reception Center serves as the general headquarters for all Reunion operations. It is open from early morning until late at night and is used as a meeting place for many people. This is often the first place returning alumni go when they arrive on campus. They check in and pick up a copy of the final program, as well as their individual class programs and room keys if they are staying on campus.

Parking and Transportation On-Campus

Parking

Parking permits are required for on-campus parking during Reunion. Permits are available at Alumni House and will be supplied to alumni when they come to check in. This parking hang-tag will allow for parking in designated areas on the main campus. We ask that alumni park in designated areas only and observe the “No Parking” signs. Any parked vehicles that block traffic will be towed (for safety and accessibility reasons).

Please be aware that absolutely no parking will be permitted on the grass in the Main Quadrangle and that parking on the street of the Main Quad is available only for people with mobility impairments. Regular shuttle service will be provided between parking lots and the Main Quad. Ten-minute pick-up and drop-off zones will be available in front of each dorm on the Main Quad, with student workers to help carry luggage to rooms.

All handicapped-parking placards, or photocopies, will be honored by the Amherst College Police. The police cannot issue handicapped-parking placards.

The Town of Amherst has designated weekday Permit Parking Only areas in the campus vicinity. The on-campus parking pass allows for parking in any designated parking space on campus. A Reunion parking pass does not apply to any metered or pay-box parking space in the town of Amherst.

On-Campus Shuttle Service

The campus shuttle will run every 15 minutes from parking lots on Route 9 to the Alumni House, Main Quadrangle and Tennis Court Lot. Please note that this shuttle does not have the capacity to transport large groups between programs.

Shuttle Hours:

Wednesday 2 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Thursday 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Friday 8 a.m. – 11 p.m.
Saturday 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Sunday 8 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

As you remember, the Amherst College campus has many hills. Programs are held in a variety of locations and unfortunately we are unable to provide individuals with transportation between buildings and programs. Alumni with mobility concerns can call 413-542-2313 before Reunion to discuss available services.

On-Campus Housing

On-campus housing is available for alumni and guests on Wednesday through Saturday evenings. Rooms may be reserved when registering for Reunion online or by paper registration form. Alumni and Parent Programs will make the housing assignments on a first come, first served basis. Room assignments and keys are picked up by alumni when they arrive on campus. We do our best to house all classmates within the same dormitory (or set of dormitories). Please note: Actual room assignments will not be available until alumni arrive on campus. Dormitory rooms are functional (extra-long twin size beds, sheets, towels, a pillow and a blanket are provided). There are no rooms with private baths. All dormitories and houses are non-smoking. The dormitories are not air-conditioned and we encourage guests to bring a fan and nightlight if necessary. For more information on housing, please see the Reunion Accomodations page.

Reunion Chairs will receive a form indicating how many beds/rooms are available at headquarters and asking for a list of classmates who should be housed there (as space allows). Most often the Reunion Chair and their committee members elect to stay at headquarters. Alumni staying at headquarters still need to register and pay for housing. On-campus housing is free for alumni and one guest each for the Classes of 1935-1958 (60th Reunion and beyond) and for children under 3 years old. Housing for children ages 4-10 is $10 per child, per night. The charge for all others is $35 per person, per night. The housing fee is waived for Reunion Chairs and their families.

Classmates who prefer to stay in local hotels or motels are advised to make their own arrangements well in advance. Please direct them to our list of local accommodations.

Children and Families

Children’s Reunion Evening Program

The Children’s Reunion Evening Program is a service sponsored by the College for children ages 4-12. The program runs on the Friday and Saturday nights of Reunion from 5-10 p.m. Dinner and age-appropriate activities are included. Learn more about Children’s Reunion.

Child Care and Babysitters

The College cannot arrange for private babysitters. If families require a sitter, it is suggested they arrange for one to accompany them to Reunion or use a source such as Care.com or Sittercity.com. (Please note: Care.com and Sittercity.com are private for-profit businesses and are in no way affiliated with Amherst College.)

Baby Monitors

The College cannot guarantee that baby monitors will work outside of the walls of a dorm. Additionally, we are not able to provide a secure network for baby monitors that utilize an internet connection.

Family Programming

The College sponsors many family-friendly activities throughout Reunion weekend, including family swimming times at Pratt Pool. In addition to these programs, the 15th, 20th and 25th Reunion classes often offer a wide variety of family-friendly activities throughout the day on Saturday (Children and Family Activities Committee). For more information about what your class can offer, please contact your class liaison.

Food and Refreshments On-Campus

For meals that are not provided by your class, alumni can purchase buffet-style meals at Valentine Hall during Reunion weekend (Please note: Valentine will not be open for dinner on Saturday evening as class banquets are being held). Prices will be posted online and in the final Reunion brochure.

Schwemm’s Gourmet Coffee House at Keefe Campus Center and Frost Café in the library are also open various times throughout Reunion.

The Alumni House Reception Center offers light refreshments (coffee, tea, snacks and cookies) during its hours of operation. On Saturday, there is also a complimentary Reunion Luncheon offered on the Valentine Quad for all alumni and guests.

Safety and Security

Security

Security is always an important issue when so many guests are on-campus for Reunion. In the past, there have been incidents of reported theft from class headquarters and program sites. The College cannot assume liability for such items and classes have had to cover the cost of replacing stolen goods that are rented from vendors.

A locked storage room is available in headquarters for each class and keys will be given to the Reunion Chair upon their arrival on-campus. We strongly encourage you to use this room to secure kegs, liquor, AV equipment, helium tanks or anything else you may have borrowed or rented for Reunion. You may wish to ask your Class Assistants to watch over the bar, souvenirs, etc. during the hours when headquarters are left unattended. Please also encourage classmates to keep their rooms locked at all times.

Lost and Found

During Reunion, articles found on-campus can be turned in at Alumni House, where they will be held until Sunday morning. At this time, all unclaimed items will be brought to the Amherst College Police station and held for 30 days. If you believe you have left something behind on-campus, please call the police station business line at 413-542–2291.

Guns and Fireworks

It is a criminal offense for anyone to carry a firearm or other dangerous weapon on any College property. Under the state’s strict gun control law, those caught with unlicensed guns face a mandatory one-year minimum sentence upon conviction. Violations of the state law on firearms and other dangerous weapons are considered extremely serious and may lead to criminal charges, including arrest. The Commonwealth of Massachusetts also prohibits the possession and discharging of any type of fireworks.

Alcohol: What you Need to Know

Who can pour?

For safety and liability reasons no alcoholic beverages may be served at functions on College property (including Reunion bars) except by TIPS (Training for Intervention ProcedureS) certified servers. BYOB events are not allowed under College policy. As in past years, Alumni and Parent Programs will hire Class Assistants for you and will ensure that they have undergone TIPS training. You may also hire professional bartenders who are TIPS certified. All alcoholic beverages — including beer, in kegs or otherwise — must be kept behind the bar and be served by a trained person. It is a state law that parents may not serve alcohol to their underage children on a licensed premise (which the campus is).

Who can drink?

No one under 21 may be served. Class Assistants are instructed not to serve any students who are 21 or older, unless that student is a guest of the class (your class budget does not need to subsidize the weekend for student workers at Reunion). If you are hosting student guests who are of age and would like them to be served, please let your Class Assistants know and they will card and serve them according to TIPS regulations.

IMPORTANT: It would be a great support to your Class Assistants to designate one person each night from your committee who can be their backup if they need help managing a classmate who needs to slow down or stop their consumption of alcohol in order to be safe. The students will have emergency numbers at their bar including Alumni and Parent Programs staff and Campus Police to call if they have concerns or there is an issue of safety. The College and your student servers share potential liability for any alcohol safety issues that may arise. Please trust them to do their jobs and back them up if they determine that it is unsafe or unwise to further serve a guest.

Other information

Cash bars are unlawful without a specific license and cannot be permitted on College property. This includes the selling of chits or tickets separate from a bar but used for redemption at a bar. This does not include the establishment of some charge for beverages incorporated in a class total Reunion fee structure. You can, therefore, include beverages as a budget item — along with food, band, tent, souvenirs, etc. — when setting a class fee.

The Town of Amherst strictly enforces its “open container” law. It prohibits the public consumption or conveyance of alcohol in open containers. Do not walk on the streets or sidewalks or appear on the town common with an alcoholic beverage in your hand. Do not drive with any open containers in your vehicle.

The Town of Amherst requires a license for all kegs. Alumni and Parent Programs will obtain a keg license to cover all Reunion classes. A copy will be provided to your class assistants.

AA Program

An Alcoholics Anonymous meeting is available on campus Friday and Saturday. There are also many meetings in the local area. Specific information will be provided in the final program.