Boy howdy.

Our beloved 1725 University Ave. SE home has sheltered countless generations of Alpha Delts over the decades. We have shared meals, rooms, experiences, and some of the most defining moments of our youth in this building. Whether we knew it or not at the time, it was in this place that we completed our metamorphosis from boys to men. We’ve seen walls crumble over time, paint chipping away with each passing generation’s shenanigans, yet the sense of responsibility and loyalty we instill in our brothers is what allows us to act like men and rebuild our castle when it is in need of our care. A house doesn’t fall apart when the physical structure gives way, it falls apart when those who inhabit it give up.

Founder’s Day is fast approaching and the strength of 1725’s foundation will once again return in droves to celebrate our brotherhood and give life back to the house that helped give us our own lives.

I for one am looking forward to seeing all the faces that never let our house fall apart over the years. It’s a time to celebrate ourselves for never giving up when the going gets rough. For fighting to keep Alpha Delta Phi alive in any way possible. I have come to learn that it is no easy task. Over the years, the tools have changed. We now live in an age where publicity is easier than ever to garner – given the accessibility of social media and e-communication. There are Facebook pages dedicated to Alpha Delta Phi in which we can see how many people know our name and what we do. Twitter accounts that share our accomplishments and personalities. We keep the spirit of ADPhi alive through our supportive words just as we keep the old headquarters alive through donations and repairs and a lot of elbow grease.  We all have different stories about each other that we love to tell at our annual celebration, but the house is the one with ALL the stories. From day one.

Thanks to all our brothers throughout the years, Alpha Delta Phi has a life of its own on the U of M campus and is now a recognized name among many Greeks and non-Greeks alike. This is a house we can truly be proud of, and one we should be honored to return to each year to celebrate many hands with one heart.

Yes, the wood is scuffed, the paint peels, the walls crumble and we all look stupid in our old composite photos — some more than others. Our house may be far from perfect at first glance, but look closer — those imperfections indicate the many stories the house has to tell. Your fraternity invites you to return this Founder’s Day and take a closer look at your house.

It has stories you’ve never heard of, and as long as we keep it alive, it always will.

Nik VanDenMeerendonk, MN ’05
Alpha Delta Phi MN Alumni Board