PSU, community gear up for Paint the Town Red

  Friday, August 24, 2018 8:00 AM
  Alumni, News, Campus Culture

Pittsburg, KS

Paint the Town Red


In a few days, the amount of crimson and gold in Pittsburg will reach a new level as the campus and community gear up for the week-long Paint the Town Red, an annual tradition that continues to evoke feelings of school spirit from one end of town to the other. 

Pittsburg State University’s Office of Alumni & Constituent Relations joined with the Pittsburg Area Chamber of Commerce in 2006 to initiate the event. Held each Fall in the week of PSU’s first home football game, it calls for creating eye-catching, creative displays. 

Local businesses and on-campus organizations are encouraged to decorate their storefronts and offices in PSU colors to express their Gorilla pride, with an eye toward winning prizes awarded to the best displays in several categories. 

Chamber Director Blake Benson said prospective businesses considering opening up shop in Pittsburg want to know that there is a collaborative partnership among institutions, businesses, and organizations located here. 

“Paint the Town Red honors not only the economic impact that Pittsburg State provides our area, but also the energy and the excitement these students to our community,” Benson said. 

Jon Bartlow, director of Alumni & Constituent Relations, said the event demonstrates to visitors the pride and spirit of both the university and the community. 

“Paint the Town Red signals the start of a new school year and a new football season,” he said, “but it also illustrates the wonderful relationship PSU has with the City of Pittsburg — something that can make a real impression on visitors who may wind up being eventual residents or students.” 

The cooperative effort also has garnered national attention; in 2008, the National Collegiate Athletic Association highlighted it as a model event for Division II universities looking to strengthen relationships with their home communities. The NCAA also included Paint the Town Red in a promotional DVD that was sent to universities across the nation. 

The week includes: 

Tuesday, Aug. 28:  

Paint the Town Red Week kicks off as businesses as well as campus offices and organizations begin decorating in hopes of winning the annual contest. 

Wednesday, Aug. 29:  

All morning, judges will be fanning out across campus to judge the Paint the Town Red Campus Decorating Contest.  

At noon, Community Favorite Award voting opens at 

Thursday, Aug. 30: 

All morning, judges will be fanning out across town to judge the Paint the Town Red Business Decorating Contest. 

At 11 a.m., Community Favorite Award voting closes at 

At noon, Award Winners announced live on KSN. 

At 7 p.m., PSU vs. Central Oklahoma 

Friday, Aug. 31: 

At 6 p.m., the Paint the Town Red Block Party gets underway on Broadway from Fourth to Sixth streets, with music, games, food, and a performance by the finalists for the Pittsburg Song Search. 

At 6:30 p.m., A Kids Fun Run will be held downtown, free to participants. For registration, visit or call 620-231-1000. 

At 9 p.m., After Party at the Kansas Crossing Casino. 

Saturday, Sept. 1: 

At 8 a.m., the PTTR 5K Run begins, with the starting and finish line at Carnie Smith Stadium. For registration, visit or call 620-231-1000. 

Paint the Town Red information, forms, and a full schedule can be found at