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Spring 2005 - Reamers

Destination Purdue > Spring 2005 - Reamers

Reamers proudly carry on traditions

By Stephanie K. Miller

Reamer club members

Photo provided by Burke Eizinger

After the Sept. 25 football game against Illinois, Reamer Club members display their "W" shirts to celebrate the win.

Boilermaker X-tra

Photo provided by Burke Eizinger

The Boilermaker X-tra Special is smaller version of Purdue's official mascot, the Boilermaker Special.

The Reamer Club, a student organization that supports Purdue University traditions, allows Burke Eizinger to actively participate in sporting events, follow school traditions and take care of Purdue's official mascot, the Boilermaker Special. It also allows him to fulfill a childhood dream.

Eizinger, a junior in agricultural communication from Rochester, Ind., has wanted to be a school mascot since he was 5. At Rochester High School, he was Zebbie the fighting Zebra, and his school voted him most likely to become a college mascot. Eizinger continues his tradition of school spirit by representing Purdue in a positive light.

For example, the Reamer Club takes pride in traditions like the Varsity Walk, an award given each spring to one senior varsity athlete. Stuart Schweigert, a former Purdue football standout, won the award in 2004. "The Varsity Walk is important because it shows who the people are that bring a positive focus to give to the community outside of Purdue and bring national recognition for the school," Eizinger said.

Reamer Club members also use their imaginations to create new student traditions that show their enthusiasm and appreciation for the university. Reamer Club members started raising a 'W' flag on top of the Jumbotron scoreboard at Ross-Ade Stadium after each Purdue Boilermaker football victory to signify, "We got the 'W,'" Eizinger said.

It is Eizinger's personal goal to see 13,000 students wear a replica of that flag with a black "W" on white shirts and chant, "We got the W," to promote school spirit. "I want to start the idea and let it fly," Eizinger said.

In addition to promoting school spirit, Jeremy Cronkhite, Reamer Club president and a senior in materials science engineering from Angola, Ind., enjoys the club because it keeps him involved with athletics. "It gives you a sense of loyalty to the school," he said.

Carrying on Purdue traditions is only half of their responsibility, as Reamer Club members also attend all sporting functions and pep rallies. "If you love sports, it's your organization," Eizinger said.

During road football games, the club members sleep on the Boilermaker Special, the Purdue train, to guard it from vandalism. Eizinger said he remembers being awakened by spirited fans while sleeping on the train. "People would wake you up on the train," Cronkhite said. "What better way to get involved in Purdue athletics?" he said.

Eizinger might not get to wear a funny mascot suit, but he continually looks forward to traveling, meeting new people and, most of all, being a Reamer for life.