Echo From the Buttes is a tradition more than 80 years strong, and it returns in force this year after taking a pandemic pause last year.
The event — in which first-year Arizona State University students hike up "A" Mountain in Tempe to paint the "A" white, symbolizing a fresh start to the new school year — included sophomores for the first time ever. It's part of the university's “SophoMORE” initiative to give second-year Sun Devils the “rites of passage” experiences they missed due to the COVID -19 pandemic.
It's a chance for incoming students to feel a part of the ASU community, especially important in a year when nearly half the undergraduate student body hasn't been on campus after the remote learning of the 2020–21 school year. And for those who wonder about the event's name — which changed in 2019 — the event is taken from ASU's fight song.
The "A" will be painted gold again before the first home football game, Sept. 2 vs. Southern Utah.
Here are some of the photos from Saturday's event.
Top photo: Indigenous students give a blessing and land acknowledgement to the sacred site known as “A” Mountain in the Sun Devil community during the 2021 Echo From the Buttes, a long-standing ASU tradition, the morning of Aug. 21, in Tempe. The students are (from left) Felix Muniz, Napolean Marrietta, Gabriel Garcia, Sara Conklin, Ian King, Brandee Joe, Dylan Bia, Ayden Clytus, Riley ONeil, (unknown) and Juliana Scocuzza (far right). Photo by Laura Fields/ASU
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