Candlelight Dinner will be held on February 13, 2020. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. in the Great Room of Prescott Hall, and dinner will be served at 6:00 p.m.
History of the Candlelight Dinner
In October 1909, Ernest and Lewis Eaton had hoped to welcome students to their new educational venture, Billings Polytechnic Institute (BPI), the first postsecondary institution in Billings and current site of Rocky Mountain College. Unfortunately, construction delays forced them to postpone the opening. During the fall of 1909, students took classes downtown until the buildings could be finished. In January 1910, the campus was finally ready, and students, faculty, and staff loaded hay wagons and made their way up 27th Street, along the canal, to RMC's current location. They arrived cold, tired, and hungry; when they went to the dining hall for dinner, they discovered that the electricity had not been turned on so they ate their first meal on campus by candlelight. While it was not the most pleasant meal, the students decided it was an event worth commemorating. Rocky Mountain College has celebrated the Candlelight Dinner every winter since 1910.
'Neath the shadow of the Rimrocks
Stands a college firm and true,
Whose green and golden banners
Hail Montana's skies of blue.
Rocky Mountain, we all love thee,
Alma mater of the West,
We raise our cry to glorify
The college we love best.
Thy traditions we all honor,
Thy fair campus we adore.
In thine ivied walls we've tarried,
College of the Open Door.