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Tabor College dedicates Centennial Plaza

‘Called to Serve’ sculpture designed by Tabor alumnus

Staff writer

Jeremy Jordan, director of alumni and related programs, called the 2008 homecoming celebration at Tabor College the “bash of the century.”

And so it was. The activities celebrating Tabor’s 100 years of existence began Wednesday with the first of five performances of the musical “Fiddler on the Roof.”

The lead role was played by Lyndon Vix, president of the Tabor College board of directors.

Other activities during the course of the weekend included sports events, art shows, the Tabor Choir in concert, special dinners, and a homecoming football game against Friends University.

A centennial quilt created by Karen Hauff, an alumnus and board member, was dedicated Saturday.

One of the other highlights of the day was the dedication of the new Centennial Plaza west of the H.W. Lohrenz Building.

A crowd gathered to participate and view the prominent bronze sculpture which sits atop a limestone base at the center of the plaza. Titled, “Called to Serve,” it features a brown, wooden-looking cross entwined with a white flowing robe. A white dove is perched at the top.

The base is surrounded by a circular walkway of pavers, some of them inscribed with names of contributors. The pavers are circumscribed with plants and a sidewalk.

The names of past presidents and dates of their tenure, inscribed on metal plates, have been installed on the brick wall lining three sides of the base.

A secondary sculpture of a young man offering a loaf of bread sets to one side. A boulder in front of the statue invites visitors to stop to rest and contemplate the meaning of service.

Artist Sandra Storm, a Tabor alumnus as well as an accomplished sculptor and painter, designed and created the sculptures. She addressed the crowd.

“I realized after working many an hour on the project ‘Called to Serve,’ that many of us have a calling,” she said. “It’s never too late. It’s more than giving bread. Take the bread, accept the bread, and pass it on.”

Larry Nikkel, president of Tabor College from 1998-2007, said the title “Called to Serve” was an accurate one because Tabor has a history of serving others.

President Jules Glanzer said the sculpture incorporates the basic symbols of the Christian life, the cross reflecting death, the burial linen reflecting the resurrection, and the dove representing the spirit in which Christians live.

Nikkel presented Glanzer with a set of coins minted in 1908.

The service concluded with a representative of each deceased past president or past presidents themselves standing in front of their respective metal plates around the base of the sculpture as the dedicatory prayer was offered.

The sculpture is a fitting reminder of the mission of Tabor College as the institution begins another century.

Last modified Oct. 8, 2008

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