Campus Traditions

DU embraces its past while continually seeking out new traditions to preserve its rich culture and heritage for the next 257 years and beyond. The Office of Student Engagement supports all University partners in celebrating and promoting DU traditions among our students and community. See below for information on traditional events both large and small.

Hockey Campout

A tradition that began in 2001, students camp out on campus to win free Hockey Tickets to the DU home games. It’s much more than just a campout though, with lawn games, music, free food and more!


As we welcome our amazing alumni back to campus, we celebrate our extended DU Community with traditions like the Crimson Classic 5K, Campus-Wide Capture the Flag, Sundaes on Wednesday and of course cheering on the Hockey Team!

First Snow

When most people think of Denver, they think of snow! So we celebrate the first snow with an accumulation of 1” or more on campus with our “First Snow” tradition of pop-up give-aways, hot cocoa and playing in the snow!


After a long winter break, we’re excited to welcome students back to campus with Winter Welcome Week, affectionately known as “WiWeWee” - a week filled with fun events to welcome students back to DU and to kick off a new quarter.

Winter Carnival

A tradition that is over 60 years old, DU Programming Board (DUPB)’s Winter Carnival is a week of festivities that begin on campus and culminate in a weekend “On Mountain” to celebrate everything the winter season in Colorado has to offer.

PEAK Leadership Experience

Leadership is for everyone, and everyone has lessons and wisdom to share. What will you share? What could you learn? The PEAK Leadership Experience is a day-long, immersive, co-curricular leadership event focused on Professional, Experiential, Academic, and Knowledge-Based leadership learning.

May Days

The DU Programming Board (DUPB)’s week-long Spring Tradition featuring fun events in the beautiful Colorado Sunshine. Typically the week culminates in the MusicFest Concert featuring student bands and an up-and-coming headliner.

Crimson & Gold Awards

A long-standing campus tradition that has grown from year to year. Crimson & Gold Awards celebrate the incredible accomplishments of our DU Community, recognizing outstanding Students, Staff, Faculty, and Student Organizations on campus.

Senior Brunch

One of DU’s newest traditions, Senior Brunch is an opportunity to recognize and celebrate graduating students in early June, before official Commencement celebrations kick off.

ASA's Expressions Talent Show

For over a decade, the Asian Student Alliance’s eXpressions has highlighted the artistic talent in the Asian Pacific American community, especially when the Asian Pacific American community has always been stereotyped as only being talented as doctors, lawyers, or engineers. The event also showcases talent from diverse backgrounds to uphold the value of inclusive excellence within the University of Denver community.

Dia de los Muertos

Dia de los Muertos is a celebration originating in central Mexico but is recognized throughout Latin America and among various Latinx communities in the US. Dia de Los Muertos participants celebrate the lives of their passed loved ones without grief or mourning. An important part of the celebration is the set up of altares de muertos or altars with ofrendas or offerings, which are used to welcome the spirits along to celebrate as a marker for navigating back home to their living loved ones.

National Coming Out Day

This annual event is hosted by the Cultural Center to commemorate the anniversary of the national march for lesbian and gay rights in Washington in 1987.

Profiles of Excellence

For 19 years Profiles of Excellence has been a campus tradition that marks a momentous occasion as it commemorates the journey of students of color from student to alum.