A weeklong celebration is being planned for September 10-16 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Kent State University at Tuscarawas. (Photo by Stacey Carmany, Tusco TV)

New Philadelphia, Ohio - The community is invited to help Kent State Tuscarawas celebrate its 50th year of providing world-class educational opportunities at a campus that’s close to home.

To mark the historic occasion, university officials have planned an entire week of special events that will honor the campus’ past and celebrate its future.

The festivities kick off on Monday, September 10, at 10 a.m. with a presentation on the history of the local campus by historian and Kent State Tuscarawas instructor Todd Hartline.

Campus Dean and Chief Administrator Brad Bielski gives an overview of the history that will be discussed at length during Hartline’s presentation.

“With about 200 students, Founders Hall first opened its doors in 1968. Since then, the campus has successfully grown over the years, with an enrollment today of nearly 2,200 students and the additions of the Science and Advanced Technology Center, the Performing Arts Center and the Tolloty Center.”

The celebration continues Monday evening at 7 p.m. as the campus welcomes NPR’s Peter Sagal to the stage at the Performing Arts Center.

Sagal is the host of  “Wait, Wait... Don’t Tell Me,” an hour-long radio news program that is broadcast each week by more than 600 public radio stations and streamed online as a popular podcast. The show has received numerous accolades and a Peabody Award for its lighthearted approach to current events.

Bielski notes that Sagal will be replacing the previously-announced speaker, Dave Barry, who had to cancel his appearance due to a family health emergency.

“While it’s unfortunate that circumstances necessitated Dave Barry to cancel his appearance, we’re excited to be able to bring someone as renowned as Peter Sagal to help us celebrate this milestone for our campus. I know people are really going to enjoy Peter’s humor and will find his presentation both entertaining and thought-provoking,” he says.

The event is free and open to the public, however, tickets are required. Tickets are available in person at the Performing Arts Center, by calling 330-308-6400 or online at The box office is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Additional events planned for the week include a reunion of Kent State Tuscarawas alumni, former athletic team members, campus retirees and friends and a performance of A. R. Gurney’s award-winning drama “Love Letters.” 

The reunion will take place on Wednesday, September 12, beginning at 7 p.m. in the Founders Hall lobby.  “Love Letters” will be performed by Bob and Melody Liberatore on Friday, September 15, at 7 p.m. at the Performing Arts Center.  Both events are free and open to the public. 

The anniversary week will culminate with a Community Open House and campus tours on Sunday, September 16, from 1 to 3 p.m. 

Bielski says university officials are looking forward to celebrating throughout the week with alumni, current students and the community. 

“This is a huge milestone for the campus and the community,” he says.

In addition to the events planned for next week, the anniversary celebration will also extend to October with another special event at the Performing Arts Center.

On Saturday, October 13, at 7:30 p.m., the Tuscarawas Philharmonic will open its 2018-2019 concert season with “A Tribute to the Beatles,” a unique program designed to honor Kent State Tuscarawas and a band that was all the rage 50 years ago when the campus was founded.

Tickets for the show are on sale now and can be purchased by calling 330.308.6400 or visiting

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