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Events | Featured | NewsOctober 18, 2021

UAFS Family Weekend

Written By: Rachel Rodemann Putman

The University of Arkansas – Fort Smith will celebrate its annual Family Weekend. On Oct. 22 and 23, all UAFS students, faculty, and staff are encouraged to bring their families to a slate of campus activities, including Lady Lions Volleyball, the traditional Chili Cook-off, and a newly introduced Cultural Festival. All events are free, and the full slate is listed on the Family Weekend website.


“The Culture Festival is an opportunity for the River Valley community to come together to appreciate, celebrate, and explore some of the cultures that exist right here in Fort Smith,” explained Nicolas Pattillo, director of International Relations at UAFS.


The festival will run from 7-9 p.m., on Friday, Oct. 22 in the Lion’s Den Courtyard and will feature educational booths staffed by members of UAFS cultural clubs, live entertainment, culturally significant activities like playing Mahjong and applying henna tattoos, and samples of cultural cuisine. UAFS students will represent Japanese, Latin American, Filipino, Polynesian, Hmong, Native American, Vietnamese, French, and German cultures at the festival. 

Festival entertainment will include vocal Japanese performances, traditional German dancing, Vietnamese fan dancing, and more. The first 100 people to visit each booth will receive a free t-shirt. 


The traditional family weekend Chili Cook-off Tailgate will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 23 in the Stubblefield Center parking lot, and the public is invited to sample chili cooked by UAFS student groups and academic departments and vote for their favorite. In addition to the chili cookoff, fair games and family-friendly rides and novelties will be available.


Throughout the weekend, UAFS alumni and friends are also invited to run the in second annual Lion’s Virtual 5K which supports the Alumni Legacy Scholarship. Runners can register here, then complete their 5K by Saturday. A course is marked on campus for those who wish to run at UAFS; others are invited to run or walk wherever they feel most comfortable.


The full slate of Family Weekend events is:


Friday, Oct. 22

Lady Lions Volleyball vs. St. Mary’s University 
6 p.m. at the Stubblefield Center
Grab your free tickets and cheer on our Lady Lions!

Visit and use promo code UAFSFamWeek21.


Cultural Festival
7-9 p.m.
Lion’s Den Courtyard
Cultural booths, free food samples, and live entertainment.
The first 100 people to visit all booths get a free t-shirt!


Saturday, Oct. 23

Support the Fort with Sigma Nu
8 a.m. - 2 p.m. at Fort Nutrition | 2816 Old Greenwood Road
Grab a smoothie or juice while out on the town! Proceeds benefit the Crisis Intervention Center.  


Chili Cook-off Tailgate
11 a.m. – 1 p.m. at the Stubblefield Center Parking Lot
Live DJ, free food, and entertainment for the whole family.


Lady Lions Volleyball vs. St. Edward’s University
1 p.m. at the Stubblefield Center
Visit and use promo code UAFSFamWeek21 for free tickets!


On Your Own

Lion’s Virtual 5K
Walk, run, hop, cycle, or skip your 5K by Saturday. Register for $35!