Barclay College in Haviland celebrated 100 years with weekend full of activities on May 5, 6 and 7

Birthdays are one thing but the birthday party for Barclay College in Haviland on May 5 and 6 was one for the record books. Graduates, students, family and friends of the college gathered to celebrate the 100 year anniversary of the college that was founded in 1917.

College President Royce Frazier said it was a full weekend of activity culminating in graduation ceremonies on May 7 when 69 students received degrees.

Activities started May 5 with a celebration dinner for all classes that ended in "7" with many participants from each 10 year class.

Then it was off to Park Hills County Club in Pratt for a golf tournament and brunch.

Saturday afternoon was back in Haviland with a concert of choirs featuring a number of choirs and choir directors from different eras that reorganized and came back for the event.

There were a number of family members that represented former students, faculty and administration that were unable to attend or had passed away.

Attendees where then treated to a tour of campus and the newest addition, the $8.5 million Ross Ellis Center for Arts and Ministry that is currently under construction. The building will house large classrooms that are needed because of the growing student population at the college. The college had 329 students enrolled this year, the largest student population in school history, Frazier said.

Besides classrooms, the facility will also house a rehearsal hall, recital hall and the main auditorium for music and theater productions that will seat 580.

Funding for the Ross Ellis Center comes from a $750,000 Mabee Foundation grant, a $50,000 Sunderland Grant with the rest coming from generous donors and supporters, Frazier said.

On Saturday night, a grand celebration was held with an alumni banquet complete with a six feet tall birthday cake with 100 candles. Over 450 attended the banquet.

There was a legacy of presidents with that gave brief information about all 16 of the presidents of the college.

After the banquet, there was a birthday party in the cafeteria where people gathered to reminisce. And there was a lot to talk about. With 100 years of history, Barclay, that used to be called Friends Bible College.

People came from across the nation to take part in the celebration. Rev. John Havens, a student from 1947 to 1951 and is 91 years old, said he saw people there he hadn't seen in years. He knew people of people from Indiana, Georgia, Arkansas (97-year-old Florence Cox whose husband was a student at the college), Colorado, Texas, Oregon and Idaho as well as many from Kansas, Havens said.

For Havens, it was a wonderful experience to see his friends and revisit the campus that meant so much for him.

"I saw people I hadn't seen for many, many years. It was just a tremendous celebration," Hazen said.

The weekend culminated with Baccalaureate on Sunday morning and graduation for 69 students on Sunday afternoon.

One of the biggest supporters and organizers for the event was Herb Frazier, past president who served from 2005-2010. Frazier, who is 88, was tireless in getting the event organized and making it a success.

Barclay College offers 10 bachelors degrees, a master of art program with seven concentrations plus a number of associate degrees and certificate programs.

The college continues to grow and thrive, hence the need for the Ross Ellis Center. Royce Frazier said he thinks their success is that God has gathered an exceptional group of people with the right expertise at the college to help push it forward in its unique roll in higher education.

"We have an exceptional faculty, administration and staff," Frazier said. "And our Board of Trustees has a very healthy compelling vision for the institution."

Barclay College enters its second century in the fall and will continue to pursue its mission:

"Preparing students in a bible-centered environment for effective Christian life, service and leadership."