While East Central College officials are still ironing out a complete list of events, the final celebration of its 50th anniversary has been set for Sunday, Sept. 15.

The campus open house will feature many activities and demonstrations, including a live petting zoo, retro vehicle display and inflatables.

The event will begin at noon and conclude at 4 p.m. Around 2 p.m. there will be a ceremony in the ECC Theatre to honor those who helped form the college 50 years ago.

President Jon Bauer noted the event is being held in September to truly celebrate when the first classes were held.

A handcrafted wooden chest, made and donated by former ECC employee Don Hays and current ECC Trustee Cookie Hays, will serve as a time capsule for the event.

“It’s beautifully made and an important part of our celebration,” said Bauer.

While many time capsules are known to be buried in the ground, Bauer said due to variables, such as water seeping in that could cause the condition of the materials to be poor, the college is not going to bury it.

“We’re hoping to avoid (those issues) by storing it on campus in a climate-controlled area,” he said.

Information, artifacts, documents and mementos from the college will be stored in the chest to create a snapshot of the college at this point in time.

Bauer hopes it will be opened again 50 years from now, as part of the centennial celebration.

The celebration will feature several food vendors, including Stlouisianaq Food Truck, Wingnut Food Truck, Dana’s Shaved Ice and The Crooked Boot.

Activities will be featured in all campus buildings with shuttles available. Guests will enjoy interactive displays and presentations put on by several academic departments.

“It will be a fun day to celebrate the first 50 years and kick off the next 50 years,” said Bauer.

The celebration will be a way for alumni to see the campus and programs in action.

Bauer said the college will publicize the event as more activities and details are announced.

Voters in 1968 voted in favor of the establishment of the Junior College District of East Central Missouri. The first classes were held roughly 17 months later in temporary facilities at Memorial Auditorium in downtown Union.