Decorating Benjamin Duke

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Benjamin Duke with a safety cone placed on his head during term II 2006.

The decoration of the Benjamin Duke statue is popular during Quadfest to demostrate dorm spirit. Generally the statue is decorated with the color of the decorator's respective dorm, although many times the statue is decorated with non-spirit related items as a prank or offensive gesture. For any future TiPsters who wish to dress up B. Duke in the morning, the ideal time is 6:31, as the sprinklers turn off at 6:30 it is still somewhat dark at that time. Also, bring a towel to dry B. Duke off because he is typically soaking wet and it makes it quite difficult to dress him if he is dripping. Also, make sure that someone stays behind to keep the door propped!!!

Battles over the statue's clothing during Quadfest are common.

Note: During Term I 2011, people at Duke University got very angry at Duke TiP for allowing decoration of B. Duke, going so far as to fine the camp. Thus, Term II kids were fervently banned from decorating the wonderful statue.

Notable Decorations

Benjamin Duke with a toga.
Quadzilla, with B. Duke behind.
  • 2003: B. Duke was given a ninja mask for the Pirates v Ninja themed dance. The police had to come and remove the mask (apparently it was considered vandalism).
  • 2003 (Term II): On opening day, an orange cone was placed on B. Duke's head. It remained there for several days.
  • 2003 (Term II): After Yatta won the contest, several magnolia leaves were taped to B. Duke's nether regions, to the amusement of all.
  • 2004: B. Duke was wrapped completely in streamers and an orange cone was placed on his head.
  • 2004 (Term II): Early in the term a pair of dark green boxers were placed on B. Duke's head. Nobody noticed.
  • 2004: B. Duke found himself covered completely in baby oil.
  • 2005: A ban was put on decorating B. Duke. However, the infamous orange cone was placed on his head for a quick photo-op while RC's yelled.
  • 2006 (Term I): Quadfest became a scene for the decorating and un-decorating of Ben Duke. 4th years struck the first blow, with a blue cape. This was quickly followed by a red mask and second cape by the 3rd years. When 4th years made an attack to remove the Pegram-red items they were met by hostile 3rd years. A brawl ensued that included but was not limited to tackling; some punches were thrown. There were a few breathless moments in which B. Duke was rocking frightfully. Some Alspaugh spectators were gasping, and saying, "Oh my god, I do NOT want to be the term that breaks Benjamin Duke!!"
  • 2006 (Term I): Ben Duke was toga-ed for the revitalized Toga Tuesday by Brett Flora and Sam Warlick. Sam the OSC had the toga removed, and the TIPster who leant his sheet to the cause, Brett, was never reimbursed.
  • 2006 (Term I): A gold flapper hat, complete with black feathers and lace, was placed on B. Duke's head on the last day of the term.
  • 2006 (Term II): Thor Tobiassen puts a Jamaican beanie-type hat, belonging to Cally!, on B. Duke along with a pair of sunglasses belonging to Will Nance.
  • 2006 (Term II): Mike's RAG (possibly SuperRAG) places the infamous orange cone on B. Duke's head.
  • 2006 (Term II): A quick photo was taken of a Kentucky Basketball t-shirt that was held over B. Duke's body for the amusement of the UK Basketball fans back home, by Caitlin Cummins.
  • 2006 (Term II): On every installment of Chillin' on the Quad, Quad-zilla was placed in front of B. Duke in a rather provocative manner.
  • 2007 (Term I): B. Duke was toga-ed again to continue toga Tuesday by Trevor Cross, Viv Pitter, and Susannah Griffee.
  • 2008 (Term I): B. Duke was decorated for Quadfest by Basset (4th years), but Pegram (3rd years) made an attack and temporarily succeeded in removing the cape. After the Basset cape was restored Peter the RC stealthily replaced the blue cape with a green cape representing Pegram and subsequently told all Tipsters they were not allowed to touch the statue. They did anyway and eventually Basset's colors were restored to the statue. Also, Bobbie's RAG won the right to decorate B. Duke and so one night they all went out and dressed him up in some of their clothes. That night they watched in horror as 2 individuals removed the clothing after lights out. The individuals were originally thought to be campus police but it was later determined that they were nothing more than common thieves.
  • 2009 (Term I): On Tuesday of the second week, a group of misguided TIPsters toga-ed B. Duke a week early. This was remedied. On the day of Quadfest, he was successfully adorned with a blue cape by Bassett very early in the day. Due to the decided unenthusiasm of all the Brownies and Alspaugh, the cape remained in its place without incident throughout the day.
  • 2009 (Term I): WARNING TO TIPSTERS- Izzy's Rag won the rights to adorn B. Duke at Pentaforce. They woke up at 7 AM on Wear A Skirt Wednesday and expertly turned him into a grandmotherly figure in a blue wig. This was met with general approval until after lunch, when every single item in the statue was stolen. After a week and a half of confusion, where the office tried to contact Duke Security and Maintenence, it was concluded that the items would not be returned. The disappearance remains a mystery. Future winners of this honor should be very cautious and perhaps ask a willing TIP Staffer to guard your valuables.
  • 2009 (Term II): B.Duke was adored with a swine flu mask and the hat, as well as a lanyard. Sakinah's RAG won the rights to dress up B.Duke for a day at Pentaforce, but they never had an opportunity to before the Swine Flu epidemic sent all TIPsters home.
  • 2010 (Term II): Toga Tuesday was again celebrated with the toga-ing of B. Duke. Later, two foolish 3rd years, wearing disguises, attempted to place an Iron Man mask on B. Duke IN BROAD DAYLIGHT. Not only were they apprehended/reprimanded, they got a lecture on disrespect to middle Eastern cultures. Ouch. The Iron Man mask was placed on a fire hydrant, disappeared a few hours later and was never seen again.
  • 2011 (Term I): Madeleine, Kate Westman, Annie Ma, and Victoria Ledford put him in a bra and a makeshift pillow case skirt, but it was torn down and thrown away by Wyatt the RC. As retaliation, Madeleine, Kristen Bagley, and Julianna Laseter dressed him in a penguin suit (feet included) which was decidedly hilarious and loved/photographed by all. The penguin suit was later torn down by staffers from another part of Duke Campus who decided that running a switchblade down the center of the penguin costume instead of taking the duct tape off would be quicker and more efficient. This destructive event was [unfortunately] witnessed by one-third of the Big Screen, Little Screen class.
  • 2012 (Term I): B. Duke was dressed in a pink skirt on Wear-a-Skirt Wednesday, and it stayed up until around lunch-time.
  • 2012 (Term I): On the day of quadfest, Pegram successfully dressed B. Duke completely in red, red shirt, red hat, red frisbee in his hand, and red boxers. The items were placed in the trash can during breakfast.
  • 2012 (Term I): On the second to last morning, B. Duke was wrapped completely in toilet paper. It was extremely comical, but unfortunately maintenance in an orange vest came with a long pole with a hook at the end and undressed him.
  • 2012 (Term II): B. Duke was given a blue toga for Toga Tuesday by the fourth years.