Bethany College football reunion set this weekend

By Steve Sell
June 15, 2015

LINDSBORG — When Ted Kessinger coached football at Bethany College, it was all about making it a family atmosphere.

Kessinger, who coached at Bethany from 1976 to 2003, put up numbers that earned him induction into three Hall of Fames as the Swedes won 219 games and lost only 57 with one tie in his 28 years, which included 16 KCAC championships.

Now Kessinger’s teams are having the "Bethany College Football Family Reunion."

The event is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday in Lindsborg, as former players, coaches and other invited personnel will gather for a homecoming.

Kessinger, 11 times the KCAC Coach of the Year, was inducted into the NAIA Hall of Fame and Kansas Sports Hall of Fame in 2003, as well as the College Football Hall of Fame in 2010.

A bevy of activities are planned. According to event spokesman Brian Bengtson, there will be 423 people attending the banquet on Saturday (including players, spouses, staff members, etc.). The pre-game meal for coaches, players and staff is at 223, while 130 women are signed up for the brunch. Also registered are 115 children for youth activities, which brings the grand total to 538.

The event is broken up into four “downs,” to borrow a football term.

• First Down •

Check-in will be at the Hahn Gym Lobby from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. Saturday.

• Second Down •

11:30 — Pre-game meal for coaches, players and staff at Philblad Memorial Union.

11:30 — Ladies brunch and fashion show, Sundstrom Conference Center, 102 N. Main in Lindsborg.

2:00 — Football Family picture, Anderson Stadium. This is for all who are attending the weekend with photos being taken by Jim Turner of Turner Photography.

2:15 — Bethany College Athletic Staff Meet and Greet. This will be in the renovated weight room in the north section of Stroble-Gibson Gym. Tours of the campus will follow. This is also free time for those who want to take in some of the Midsummer’s Festival that is going on the same weekend.

•  Third Down •

5:15 — Social Hour at the Outdoor Amphitheatre, which is in the middle of campus. If there’s rain, it will be moved to “The Pit,” which is the lower level of the Student Union.

6:00 — The banquet at Stroble Gibson. This is a semiformal dinner and program for invited guests. Children over 16 may attend at an extra cost.

6:00 — Children can attend a dinner and take part in activities at the Messiah Lutheran Church Fellowship Hall. Children need to be there by 5:30.

• Fourth Down •

10:00 — A service will be led at Presser Hall with former assistant football coach and team chaplain Marv Anderson presiding. Several former players will be assisting.