ATHENS, Ala. (WHNT) – Mark your calendars! One local university will be celebrating its bicentennial in July…with a series of events leading up to summer commencement.

Athens State University is planning to go large to mark 200 years of education. Here’s what they’ll be doing, when it’ll happen, and how you can participate.

July 22 @ 6:35 p.m. – Bicentennial Celebration: Rocket City Trash Pandas (500 Trash Panda Way or 319 Contec Rd, Madison)

Join Athens State and the Trash Pandas for a game against the Birmingham Barons. The family-friendly event will conclude with fireworks for all to see. Group tickets, which include $2 in ballpark currency, are available here.

July 24 @ 11 a.m. – A Service of Gratitude at Athens First United Methodist Church (208 W Hobbs St, Athens)

This special service, open to the entire community, will celebrate ASU’s history and the obstacles it’s overcome in 200 years, while also looking back at the University’s beginning as a Methodist college. No registration or signup is required.

July 25 @ 7 p.m. – Athens State Community Band Bicentennial Concert at McCandless Hall, located just south of the intersection of Pryor and Elkton Streets

The University’s Community Band, made up of community and campus members, will perform a special (and free) concert in McCandless Hall to mark the bicentennial. Registration is required due to limited seating; information can be found here.

July 26 @ 6 p.m. – Movie Night at McCandless Hall

Join Athens State University for a free showing of Disney’s “Encanto” in McCandless Hall. Like the Community Band Concert, advance registration is required due to limited seating. More information can be found here.

July 27 – Campus Field Day

All across campus, faculty, staff, and students are invited to participate in tournaments for kickball, cornhole (bags), and pickleball. Referees are also needed to keep score and manage the games. Visit the Athens State website for times and locations.

July 28 @ 7 p.m. – Concert on the Limestone County Courthouse Square (200 W Washington St, Athens)

Two bands will perform: Iron Horse, a heavy metal and bluegrass band, will open for country musician Collin Raye. An alumni social in Merchants Alley (107 N Jefferson St) will precede the concert at 5:30 p.m. No registration or signup is required; just be sure to bring lawn chairs. Find out more about the musicians here.

July 29 @ 6:30 p.m. – Athens Forever Homecoming Dinner at the Carter Gym (200 N Beaty St, Athens)

The annual homecoming dinner will be served at 6:30 p.m., with a cocktail social starting at 5:30 p.m. Tickets can be purchased online, by emailing advancement@athens.edu, or by calling (256) 233-8215.

July 30 @ 11 a.m. – Summer 2022 Commencement at the Carter Gym

The Athens College Class of 1972 will don the caps and gowns once again to mark their 50th anniversary as graduates before the Class of 2022 receives their degrees. Class of ’72 members who want to participate should RSVP by contacting Dr. Glenn Connor, Director of External Relations & Alumni Affairs at (256) 233-8114 or Glenn.Conner@athens.edu.