President Kaleb Stephens presents a Pi Alpha recognition trophy to the chapter honoring the 38 members who have/or will have ridden in the national cross-county cycling trip. He if flanked by chapter members who are part of that elite group.
Chapter members who participated in the April 12, 2014 Pi Kapp 100 are surrounded by fraternity brothers and their families following the ride from Zionsville to Lafayette.
Moms Day/Pi Kapp 100 sets records
A fun-filled, bright, warm spring day kept fraternity family members busy during the record-breaking Moms Day/Pi Kapp 100 on April 12, 2014.
A crowd of nearly 280 people greeted the 24 Pi Kapp 100 riders and crew as they completed their Zionsville-to-Lafayette 100-kilometer bike ride that day. Riders were required to raise at least $150 and crew $75 toward the chapter’s annual fund-raising for Push America, the national philanthropic effort benefitting the disabled.
Then, the lunch crowd of 280, helped celebrate the accomplishments of the Purdue fraternity during 2013-14, with a series of speakers.
The audience heard from Brenden Hulett, chapter historian, about the day’s events. The activities included a mom’s day reception with appetizers, an auction that raised funds for either Push or an house improvement project, and a social gathering late into the evening. Fraternity and family members also learned about the various ways the fraternity reaches out to the disabled from Thomas Fisher, Push America chairman.
Push events during the 2013-14 school year included: the third annual 72-hour David R. Feltner Bike-a-Thon, seventh Annual War of Roses and 15th annual Pi Kapp 100 – all raising funds and awareness for Push. Furthermore, the chapter sends members each school day to the Lafayette Jefferson High School special needs classes and hosts the Arctoberfest, a Halloween costume party for clients of the Arc of Tippecanoe.
Academic chairman Rita Baker and chapter advisor Pat Kuhnle recognized the 75 chapter members who had a 3.0 or higher last semester. Also, the 35 men with a 3.5 or higher and the seven 4.0 GPAs were honored.
Fraternity alumni Kevin Ohaver and Andy Parker, founders of the Pi Kapp 100, a 100-kilometer cycling trip each spring established in 1999, reminisced about how the event got started. They lauded the chapter for making it grow over the years and were amazed by the immensity of the Pi Kapp 100/Moms Day Saturday that drew nearly 350 people.
The evening auction raised $9,775. Of that, donors targeted Push America with $3,140 of the total amount raised. Another of $3,000 was raised through the Pi Kapp 100 part, meaning the day brought in more than $6,000 for Push on Saturday.
That amount, combined with the proceeds of the War of Roses earlier in the week, which pitted 15 sororities competing in various activities including an empathy dinner, a disability race and a talent show, raised $5,112. Thus, the week of April 9 grossed an excess of $11,000 for the chapter’s national outreach program.
The luncheon portion of the day ended when president Kaleb Stephens surprised everyone by presenting a Pi Alpha trophy. The hardware recognized the 38 Purdue chapter members who had/will have ridden in the annual summer Journey of Hope, a summer Push America national fraternity cross-county cycling trip raising awareness and funds for the disabled.
Stephanie DeMarco is all smiles as she was named the 2014 Rose Queen after Zeta Tau Alpha earned the War of Roses competition.
Zetas earn War of Roses crown
Zeta Tau Alpha’s Stephanie DeMarco won the title of Rose Queen at the culmination event of the weeklong War of Roses.
More than 600 people attended the April 9, 2014 talent show that ended a week of empathy training, volunteering and various competitions for Pi Kappa Phi and 15 sororities. Push America, the national philanthropic effort of Pi Kappa Phi, benefits from the fund-raising and disability awareness.
The 2014 competition grossed $5,112 as more than 600 people packed the lower ring of Loeb Playhouse on the Purdue campus during the talent competition.
Winners of the weeklong War of Roses included:
• Alpha Gamma Delta, disability race.
• Zeta Tau Alpha, penny wars.
• Kappa Alpha Theta, ticket sales.
• Alpha Gamma Delta, talent show.
• Zeta Tau Alpha, overall winner.
• Phi Mu, overall runner up
• Kappa Alpha Theta, second runner up.
Pi Kappa Phi wishes to thank all participating sororities and our skip-a-meal sponsor, Hot Box, for assisting those with disabilities both locally and nationally.
Participating sororities include:
Zeta Tau Alpha, Phi Mu, Delta Zeta, Delta Gamma, Sigma Delta Tau, Delta Delta Delta, Alpha Xi Delta, Alpha Gamma Delta, Sigma Kappa, Kappa Kappa Gamma, Alpha Omicron Pi, Gamma Phi Beta, Kappa Alpha Theta, Alpha Chi Omega, and Alpha Phi. Thank you!
Photos from the event can be found at:
A sorority members looks bewildered as she is forced to eat with her thumb and pinkie taped together during the April 8 empathy dinner at Pi Kappa Phi.
Fraternity dines with disabilities
Nearly 50 fraternity and participating sorority members mimicked various disabilities during the 2014 War of Roses competition at Pi Kappa Phi on April 8, 2014.
Events included eating while hearing impaired, mute, blind, speaking with words with only three letters, words that only start with the letter “k,” eating with your non-dominant hand and with three fingers. The intent was for participants to learn what it was like to have a disability.
The empathy dinner followed an afternoon whereby representatives from as many as 15 sorority volunteered alongside fraternity members in the special needs classes at Lafayette Jefferson High School.
The week-long War of Roses will conclude on April 9, when 1,000 people are expected to attend a talent show in Loeb Playhouse on the Purdue University campus.
Photos from the empathy dinner can be found at:
A sorority member stacks cups with one hand during the April 7, 2014 War of Roses competition at Pi Kappa Phi.
War of Roses competition begins
Flying Solo cups along with blindfolded and hand-impaired sorority members kicked off the competition portion of the 2014 Pi Kappa Phi War of Roses on April 7, 2014.
Thirteen of the 15 War of Roses sororities were represented in the April 7 competitions at the fraternity house. On April 8, the chapter will host an empathy dinner whereby sorority members must mimic some disability. Furthermore, at least one participant from each competing sorority will accompany fraternity brothers as they visit the special needs classes at Lafayette Jefferson High School.
Then on April 9, as many as 1,000 audience members will cram into Loeb Playhouse on the Purdue University campus to see a talent show among the 15 sororities.
However, on April 7, the focus was on representatives from the chapters doing various impaired competitions. The tasks included: Tying their shoes and stacking cups with one hand, hopping up and down stairs with one leg and various other things such as buttoning a jacket with socks over participants’ hands.
Sororities sent dozens of their sisters to support each other and play the various games. Points are assigned to winners and will factor into the week’s champion. Additional points will come from a sheet sign competition, t-shirt sales, penny wars and talent show ticket sales.
The winning sorority will have a representative become the Rose Queen for the fraternity and her photo will accompany the brothers on next year’s composite.
Photos from Day 1’s events can be found at:
A fraternity auctioneer holds up baked goods during the 2013 Moms Day event in front of a crowd of nearly 200 in the fraternity's Great Hall and foyer.
It’s time for Moms Day 2014!
The most popular Pi Kappa Phi family event is nearly upon us – the annual Pi Kapp 100/Moms Day event scheduled for April 12, 2014.
Arguably the largest moms day event in the Purdue Greek system, we expect nearly 300 to participate.
The first event will begin shortly after noon at Debbie’s Catering at the Lafayette Shrine Club, 3024 Old State Road 25. You can meet us there or park at the fraternity house, 330 N. Grant St., West Lafayette, and take one of chartered busses to the luncheon location.
We anticipate the Pi Kapp 100 team – a group of chapter cyclists who will have traveled 100 kilometers to the site that day – to arrive by roughly 12:30 p.m. After a short gathering outside, including a team photo, we will assemble inside the Shrine Club for a buffet luncheon. During the end of the meal, parents will be treated to a slideshow of events during the school year and a series of speakers. Our president, historian, Push America chairman, chapter advisor and academic advisor will reflect upon the accomplishments of the chapter during the 2013-14 school year.
Our keynote speakers will be fraternity alumni Kevin Ohaver from Charlotte, NC and Andy Parker from Atlanta, GA. It was the vision of those two who first established the Pi Kapp 100 in 1999.
We hope to complete the luncheon festivities by 2:15 p.m. Then moms (and their sons and guests) have some free time until a 4 p.m. reception at the fraternity house. Appetizers will be available from 4 to 6:30 p.m. in the chapter house basement. At 5 p.m., we will commence our annual auction with proceeds going to a house improvement project or the chapter’s Push America annual fund-raising efforts – donor’s choice.
Auction items, which parents bring and for which they bid against each other, have included: filled picnic baskets, lottery tickets, Cubs or Sox baseball tickets, old beer signs, cookies for a year (yes, one local mom will bake a dozen cookies for a year for a fraternity member), Purdue and Pi Kappa Phi sportswear, neon fraternity signs and even original paintings of the fraternity house. Use your imagination and then up the bids!
By 6:30 p.m., the auction will be over and you will have a chance to fill up on appetizers or take your son out to dinner. For those brave enough, there will be a 9 p.m. social event with fraternity mom/sons.
If you have not yet done so, please RSVP to Brenden Hulett, chapter historian ASAP. Brenden is also your contact person should you have questions about the event.
He can be reached at:
You can register your auction item with Brenden and indicate whether you wish it to go through the public or silent auctions. The silent auction will conclude at 5 p.m. when the public auction begins.
Photos from the 2013 Moms Day/Pi Kapp 100 can be found at:
Chapter members Reece Kenney, Kaleb Stephens, Caleb Shoup, Johnny Fullerton and Ben Hagen perform the last portion of their act during the 2014 Big Man on Campus competition.
Pi Kapp 'Back Street Boys' hit stage
Pi Kappa Phi’s Caleb Shoup was among the 30 fraternity contestants competing for the crown of Big Man on Campus on Friday, March 7, 2014, in front an audience of more than 5,000.
Being one of the largest membership chapters on campus, Shoup’s performance was held in the near of the 2-hour event held in the Elliott Hall of Music. In fact, he was No. 21.
Seven chapter brothers participated as support cast for the “Pi Kapps present the ‘70s, ‘80s and ‘90s” routine. The opening was a guitar solo by Ryan Sanders playing the theme from “Top Gun.” Then the ‘70s opening portion of the montage of sung songs was “Sweet Home Alabama,” with “You Give Love a Bad Name” from the ‘80s.
The roughly two and one-half-minute show ended when four brothers, dressed as the Backstreet Boys, joined Shoup in singing, “I Want It That Way.” As the performance neared its climax as two brothers in their aqua colored jackets on either side of Shoup, turned around to spell out B-M-O-C for the crowd.
The singer/dancer accompaniers in the turnaround included Reece Kenney, Kaleb Stephens, Johnny Fullerton and Ben Hagen. They were supported by Andrew Bohner (guitar), Brant Fettig (bass guitar) and Sanders (guitar).
The 20+ hours of preparation took place over several weeks leading up to the largest Greek philanthropy effort of the school year. The Zeta Tau Alpha event raised more than $112,000 for breast cancer research.
Nearly 100 Pi Kapps joined 50+ Sigma Kappa sorority members in their standing ovation for the performance.
Although the Pi Kapp show did not take first-place in the event, Shoup was happy of the efforts.
“For me, one of the best parts was being able to work on the performance with a few brothers and making our chapter proud,” Shoup said. “Working with the other contestants throughout the year was fun, but I had the most fun working on our performance with my brothers and performing in front of the Greek community.”
There were numerous events leading up to the Friday night event. There were sheet signs to be hung, events to attend and skip-a-meals to be had (skip-a-meal is when a chapter skips dinner at its house and instead eat at a near-campus eatery with half the proceeds going toward a charity). Pi Kappa Phi won one of those events, the skip-a-meal at Hotbox Pizza.
Photos from the Pi Kapps during the routine can be found at:
A video of the songs can be found at:
Kaleb Stephens, Pi Kappa Phi president and vice president of the Paint Crew, prepares for a home basketball game.
The Man Behind the Makeup
Basketball fans know him even though they may not know his name.
Those who watch him during Purdue basketball games think he’s a wild-ass super fan. In actuality, he’s mild-mannered and a former high school athlete himself participating in golf, basketball and football.
Pi Kappa Phi president Kaleb Stephens is the guy behind the make-up, wig and Purdue swag.
“I’ve always loved the game of basketball,” Stephens said. “The passion that members of the Paint Crew had for the men’s basketball team my freshman year showed me that this was the perfect organization for me. I came to Purdue with the goal of making a difference and I knew this was the perfect opportunity to do just that.”
As vice president of the Paint Crew this year, he leads one of the largest student sections in the Big Ten in cheers, jeers and sneers.
It takes him about 45 minutes to put on his game face. Sometimes that happens at the fraternity other times in a building nearby Mackey Arena. The black clothed Stephens, first paints the charcoal black Ben Nye make-up around his eyes – from covering his eye brows to the base of each nostril in an enlarged comma sorta way.
Then the routine has him using a paintbrush with Aztec gold paint from his chin to his forehead and on his lips around the already blacked-out eyes. With precision, he paints his face back and forth until the gold sparkles and skin tone vanishes. Then black mascara is smeared from his chin down his neck to inside his Paint Crew t-shirt.
With his face colored from hair to chin, he dons a black and gold wig and hangs a gold chained Block P license place around his neck that parks on his chest. Long gold evening dress-type gloves go up his arms with black wrist bands on top of them. The finishing touch is a black Purdue headband and a Boilermakers placard as a belt. His feet are complete with calf-length Boilermaker socks black shoes with gold laces. Then his game attire is complete.
He makes an impression.
“Every game, I have both children and adults seek me out to thank me for what I do and to take photos with me,” the senior management major says. “The appreciation they have for all the of the hard work that we put into running the organization is incredibly humbling.”
Sometimes, he draws the ire of opposing players who sit 15 feet to the right of his front-row chamber, which is about six feet from the pep band. He’s been flipped off by players and joked with by officials.
“I’ve had people from across the country reach out to me and tell me they see me on TV all the time and they love what I do,” Stephens says. “My social media interactions always spike during the season and it’s always fun to receive the ‘smack talk’ from Hoosier fans.”
His admirers come in all forms. There’s even a member of the Izzone at Michigan State who now mimics Stephens’ attire, but with a green and white motif.
His most memorable event in his four years in the Paint Crew was when the Big Ten Network dedicated a portion of its weekly documentary, “The Journey,” to the student section in 2012. Stephens was interviewed for, and broadcast on, the show.
“It was a unique experience and one of the most memorable of my college career,” he said.
The Paint Crew is not the only thing he does with Purdue. He’s also been a football manager.
Photos of Stephens preparing for a game, during various games and as a football manager on senior day can be found at:
Potential new members watch a slideshow of the various Push America programs Pi Kappa Phi in each school year
Chapter showcases Push events
Potential new members learned a bit about what makes Pi Kappa Phi Purdue’s best fraternity on Thursday, Jan. 23 – Push America.
Several dozen men searching for a chapter to join, heard from a panel of fraternity members who spoke about their experiences with Push. The national fraternity’s outreach program to assist the disabled locally and nationally – Push America – is one thing that makes Pi Kappa Phi unique.
During their undergraduate careers, chapter members participate in a variety of ongoing outreach efforts. Annual chapter-level events include: The David R. Feltner Memorial Bike a Thon (fall), Arctoberfest (fall), War of Roses (spring), Pi Kapp 100 (spring) and Lafayette Jefferson High School volunteer relationship (throughout the year).
During 2012-13, for example, through its outreach efforts, Pi Kappa Phi touched nearly 2,500 people. Furthermore, six members rode in the 2013 Journey of Hope – a national Push cycling event that has nearly 50 brothers from various chapters ride from the West Coast to Washington, DC. Four chapter members will participate in 2014.
Here’s a brief description of the events that help set Pi Kappa Phi apart from other fraternities.
• Feltner Bike-a-Thon. For 72 hours at least two stationary bikes are ridden to raise funds and awareness leading up to Homecoming each fall.
• Arctoberfest. The fraternity hosts clients of the Arc of Tippecanoe, a local agency assisting disabled, for a costume party/carnival near Thanksgiving.
• War of Roses. This two-week empathy training, outreach, talent extravaganza involves more than 1,000 people. In 2013, for example, 16 sororities competed to earn the War of Roses crown.
• Pi Kapp 100. The chapter hosts a 100-kilometer cycling trip from the Indianapolis area to the Purdue campus each spring. As many as 40 riders arrive on the steps of the fraternity house during the annual Moms Day each spring.
• Lafayette Jefferson High School Volunteer Relationship. Each school day during the fall and spring semesters, fraternity members assist in two special needs classes at a local high school.
Photos from the Jan. 23 new member recruitment event can be found at:
Chapter members work with students with a wide variety of disabilities from cognitive to physical.
Pi Kappa Phi completes its spring recruitment period the week of Jan. 27. For more information about the process, contact Matt McKee at:
or at 315.727.1182.
Pi Kappa Phi has won six consecutive R.B. Stewart Awards, signifying it as Purdue’s best fraternity. It’s commitment to Push America (pushamerica.org) is one of those reasons.