The Pull & the Tooley Family

The Pull, a unique tug-of-war contest, is one of America’s oldest standing college traditions: on Saturday, Hope College will experience the Pull for the 120th time. Each year, freshman and sophomore teams face each other from each bank of Black River, attempting to claim the rope for themselves.

Each team is comprised of 18 Pullers and 18 Moralers, who direct and support the Pullers for three rigorous hours. Even Year teams stick together while those of Odd Year form their own unity. Every year, the coaches pass down traditions to the current teams, and seniors coach the sophomore team while the junior coach is responsible for the freshmen. After having participated in the Pull as a team member, students have the opportunity to be selected as the next coach by the current ones.

Hope College Pull Rope-Run classes of 2019 and 2020

This year, Allison Tooley ’18 is a coach for the ’20 Pull team after having been a ’18 Moraler for two years. By working with her fellow coaches to prepare the sophomores for this year’s competition, she has become familiar with the traditions and strategies unique to the Even Year teams. Allison has been practicing intensively for the past three weeks and promoting Hope’s significant tradition by dressing in the traditional colors of red and white for the first five weeks of the semester.

Allison learned about the Pull already in her childhood, as her parents participated in the event when they were students at Hope College. Her father, Eric Tooley, was a Puller on the ’87 Pull Team and her mother, Anne Hathaway Tooley, participated as a Morale Girl on the ’88 Pull Team. For both Eric and Anne, the Pull was one of the first events that shaped their experience at Hope College, where a shared purpose and commitment to hard work instantly brought their respective teams together. As the Tooley Family exemplifies, the Pull connects students in marvelous ways and creates meaningful, lifelong friendships.

Hope College – The 2015 Pull event held on both sides of The Black River.

In addition to the Pull, the Tooley Family also upholds the tradition of the college’s Greek Life: Both Allison and her sister, Katelyn, are Sigmas, while Anne is a Delphi and Eric a Frater. In 2015, Katelyn graduated with a dual major in Business and Political Science, and Allison is a senior majoring in Business.

This weekend, the Tooley Family will be cheering for the ’20 Pull Team at the Rope Run on Friday and at the Pull on Saturday. To them, the Pull is an incredibly meaningful tradition, and so much more than a game of tug-of-war.

Homecoming Donut Run 5K | Benefiting Dance Marathon

Hey you. Yes, you. Let’s chat! I want to tell you about something amazing.

My name is Erin Murphy and I am a senior here at Hope College studying Communication and Business. I currently serve as the Marketing Director for Dance Marathon. I’ve been a part of Dance Marathon since my freshman year and have loved every moment of it.

For those of you who may not be incredibly familiar with the program, Dance Marathon is a nationwide network of college students who partner with and fundraise for their local Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. Throughout the year, students across the country plan events, partner with restaurants for percentage nights, and personally fundraise to add to their yearlong fundraising total that is shared at the main event: The Marathon itself. Hope’s Dance Marathon culminates in a 24-hour party where students across campus stay awake and on their feet in solidarity with kids who are fighting a variety of horrible illnesses. As a campus, we come together as one generation fighting for the next.

For us here at Hope, our total proceeds go to Helen Devos Children’s Hospital in Grand Rapids. As we enter our 19th year of the program, we have already raised over $2 million for the hospital. We’ve gotten to create some amazing events, meet some beautiful Miracle Kids who have overcome so much, and create an incredible community of Hope students who are passionate about serving the hospital.

Now, are you ready to hear that amazing thing I promised to tell you?

On Saturday, October 14, Hope College Dance Marathon is partnering with the office of Alumni and Family Engagement for the first ever Homecoming Donut Run 5K Benefiting Dance Marathon!!!

Hope students and alumni are likely familiar with a local donut shop located within walking distance from campus. Late night “donut runs” have become a common part of the Hope experience. Essentially, the shop owner allows Hope students to walk in and buy freshly made donuts at all hours of the night. Seriously, sometimes the place is packed at 1 a.m. with donut-munching students. This unique tradition inspired us. So this year, we’re putting a fresh spin on it – making it a real life donut run!

What does this mean? The 5K will still have the awesome long sleeve t-shirt, chip timing, and take you through our beautiful city of Holland. However, it will also feature delicious donuts holes along the route and full donuts at the finish line. We’ll also have some Miracle Kiddos at the starting line, ready to cheer you on and countdown the race! Woohoo, how exciting!

Additionally, all proceeds from this year’s 5K will go towards our year-long fundraising total. This year, we’re setting our goal high at $310,000. I know, it’s a big number, but the joy and wellness of the kids is definitely worth the challenge.

And here comes the most amazing part of all:

You have the opportunity to go on a Donut Run for the kids. You can be a part of this incredible event and support children in the hospital. You can make a difference in the lives of kids who deserve the world. By going for a run through the beautiful city of Holland, you not only get a t-shirt and some delicious donuts, you get to proudly know that you are supporting child life services at HDVCH. Now that’s pretty amazing.

Registration is now live and you can sign up here. The event will start and end at Ray and Sue Smith Stadium on Hope’s campus and the race begins at 9 a.m. The price is $20 for Hope students and Miracle Families and $30 for alumni, faculty, staff, and Holland community members.

We are so excited about this partnership with the Alumni and Family Engagement office and can’t wait for Homecoming weekend to be here! We would love to see you there, supporting kiddos who deserve the world. So bring your friends, family, professors, students, anyone- and we’ll see you on Saturday, October 14!

Register today!