Dr Pepper Hour celebrates 60th anniversary

Baylor students create carry-out bags filled with candy during the 60th Anniversary of Dr. Pepper Hour on Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2013, in Barfield Drawing Room. Matt Hellman | Lariat Photo Editor


By Taylor Rexrode

Staff Writer

Dr Pepper Hour is officially 60 years old.

Students celebrated the 60th anniversary of Dr Pepper Hour Jan. 15. Students, faculty and staff had the opportunity to gather together under a glowing Dr Pepper Hour banner and share memories of the beloved soft drink.

Students took in the sights around them as they entered Barfield Drawing Room. A photo booth stood in one corner for attendees to take photos with classic soda bottle props. Treats such as a Baylor green-and-gold cake and bear-shaped cookies were laid out next to the original Dr Pepper floats. The Dr Pepper Museum table laid out a timeline of the Dr Pepper bottle evolution and held a drawing for free tickets to the museum.

Jordy Dickey, assistant director of the Student Union, planned the community gathering months in advance.

“Coming into this role, I’ve been dreaming and thinking about this for a couple years now,” Dickey said. “We wanted a fun kind of feel that was modern but brought in elements of the classic tradition. It was a joint team that thought together how we wanted to make it fun.”

Dickey worked alongside Jennifer Cook, coordinator of Student Union for Events, and Holly Smith, graduate apprentice for Student Union Programming Board, as well as other students and administrators who had a hand in making the commemorative event come to life.

The tradition of Dr Pepper Hour started in 1952 as Coffee Matinee Hour under Marie Mathis, assistant to the dean of the student union.

She wanted students and Baylor faculty to meet together and socialize in a carefree environment. A year later the coffee matinee changed into Coke Hour where Coca-Cola was added to vanilla ice cream to create a float. When Dr Pepper became Baylor’s official beverage in July 1997, the university began creating Dr Pepper floats, which have remained a Dr Pepper Hour tradition.

Joy Summar-Smith, associate director of the Dr Pepper Museum, attended the event and spoke of her love for Dr Pepper and the Dr Pepper Hour.

“I love the pride that the Waco community takes in Dr Pepper and how it has spread onto Baylor campus,” Summar-Smith said. “And I love those 23 different flavors that make a unique combination. Before I even started working at the museum I was a Dr Pepper fan.”

Bedford sophomore Cameron Melton shared her favorite memory of Dr Pepper Hour.

“It was when I wanted to learn about studying abroad,” Melton said. “Every culture you could imagine was there. I had a Dr Pepper and we were all drinking it together. The Dr Pepper seemed to unite everyone.”

Bushland junior Trenton Garza likes seeing friends every Tuesday at Dr Pepper Hour.

“It’s always fun to run into friends that I may not be able to see on a daily basis,” Garza said. “Dr Pepper Hour always invites the Baylor community together. It reminds you of being a unified Baylor family.”

To experience more Dr Pepper Hour memories, students, faculty and staff can visit the BU Student Activities Twitter page @BaylorSA or post their own memory by tagging #DPH60.