MANKATO — Put out a call to the 50,000 students who lived in Gage dorms during the facility’s near half-century of existence and you’re bound to get a host of responses.
In the weeks prior to Saturday’s razing of the defunct twin towers residence halls, the Minnesota State University Alumni Office asked alums to share their favorite memories of living there. Here are some of their responses:
“One of my first jobs after high school (in 1964) was painting much of the interior of Gage buildings. My job was transporting paint, 5-gallon buckets, by hand up to all the floors since the elevators were not yet working. They were the tallest buildings in Mankato and expected to last forever, I supposed then. Recently I returned to Mankato to live out my life and I was sad to learn that Gage was to be destroyed.”
— former student Adrian Oliver
“During the Minnesota Vikings training camp in the early 1970s the players occupied the lower floors of Gage and were supplied with Land O Nod mattresses. As a Gage resident, it was imperative to arrive on campus early to raid the (departed) Vikings players’ rooms and swap your thin, school-issued mattress for the more luxurious Land O Nod mattresses.”
— Mary Quinn Kraemer, ’72 and ’81 and Gary L. Kraemer, ’74 and ’81
“I was in Gage from ’73 to ’77. In ’73 we staged a mass-streak down the mall in the winter and got caught by Campus Security and the Mankato PD. We all ended up back in our rooms with only a slap on the wrist. We looked pretty awkward with everyone else’s pants on, all lined up somewhere down from what used to be a country road south of the stadium. And it was cold. We were also known for taking a day’s catch of carp and bringing them back to swim another day in the girls shower and bathtub a floor below.”