Orange Terrace chair against night sky over Lake Mendota

In honor of UW–Madison’s 175th anniversary, we’ve pulled together a collection of articles about the things Badgers love best. Click on the links below for an immersion in all your favorite campus traditions, from the Fifth Quarter to Bascom Hill snowball fights to the Marching Band’s classic rendition of “On, Wisconsin.” It’s the next best thing to sitting on a Terrace chair in a cardinal-and-white T-shirt with a scoop of your favorite Babcock Dairy flavor.

Badger football player holds the Paul Bunyan axe trophy

Paul Bunyan’s Axe. Jeff Miller

If You Want to Be a Badger

Here are the 14 things every UW–Madison grad should know.

 Terrace Chairs

The sunburst design is one of the UW’s most recognizable symbols.

 Badger Cuisine

UW food has evolved from 19th-century pigeon soup to 21st-century grain bowls.

Bucky Badger does pushups atop a gym mat held aloft by members of the Wisconsin cheerleading squad

Bucky Badger’s push-ups. Bryce Richter

Bucky Badger Push-Ups

Read our definitive account of how and when the tradition began.

UW Marching Band

The set list balances tradition and innovation, with only-at-the-UW selections like “Beer Barrel Polka.”

Abraham Lincoln Statue

A hop onto Abe’s lap is a high point of any UW commencement weekend.

The Badger Bash

The pregame party has grown from low-key to high-powered.

Members of the UW Marching Band cheer during a Badger game

UW Marching Band. Althea Dotzour

Statue of Liberty

Follow the rise, fall, and rise of a beloved UW tradition.

Memorial Library Cages

Studying in the slightly creepy carrels has been a rite of passage for generations of students.

Babcock Hall Ice Cream

The legendary scoops are a student staple as well as a tourist attraction.


It’s a time to meet other new students and learn the lyrics to “Varsity.”

Students pose in front of a large inflatable Statue of Liberty that appears to be sinking into a frozen Lake Mendota

The Lake Mendota Statue of Liberty.

Bascom Hill Snowball Fights

The epic winter battle pits the Southeast against the Lakeshore residence halls.

Official UW–Madison Tour

The 75-minute stroll brings a magical campus to life.

Summer Music Series on the Terrace

The concerts became a sensation in the ’80s and then made a post-pandemic comeback.

Union Weddings

The Wisconsin Union has hosted hundreds of euphoric ceremonies since 1929.

Rows of containers of Babcock ice cream

Babcock Hall ice cream. Bryce Richter

Winter Carnival

The cold-weather tradition began in 1940 with ice sculpture contests, a ski jump, and a Snow Ball.

Spring Powwow

The Wunk Sheek event brings together the university community and Wisconsin’s tribal nations.

Displays on Bascom Hill

The steep slope serves as a blank canvas for getting the word out for a group or a cause.

Varsity Band Concert

For decades, student musicians have been wowing fans with over-the-top showmanship.

UW grad dressed in cap and gown poses with Abraham Lincoln statue on Bascom Hill

Abraham Lincoln statue. Brian Huynh


Campus Greek organizations raise money for charity with the musical-comedy show.

The Plazaburger

The Plaza Tavern began serving its iconic burger to UW students in 1964.

Campus Rivalries

Competition can be fierce at the UW, whether it’s the Daily Cardinal vs. the Badger Herald or the Lakeshore versus Southeast residence halls.

Lake Mendota Steam Whistle

The UW’s loudest sound signals boaters while startling Terrace crowds.


No comments posted yet.

Post a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *