On Saturday, Feb. 15, the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets will hold the 71st annual Senior Banquet and Military Ball as part of Military Weekend. 

A special event for all cadets, it is particularly meaningful for the graduating senior class that will be honored first at the Senior Banquet and then later when all seniors are presented to the entire corps at the Military Ball.

The corps will kick off the weekend with a formal retreat ceremony on Friday, Feb. 14, at 4:45 p.m. The ceremony will be held at the flagpole on Upper Quad behind Lane Hall which is located at 280 Alumni Mall. The regiment will be formed between Lane, Shanks, and Major Williams halls. The Color Guard will lower the flag; Skipper, the corps cannon, will fire; and the Highty-Tighties, the regimental band, will play. All are invited to attend the retreat formation.

The weekend will continue on Saturday, Feb. 16, as the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets holds the 71th annual Senior Banquet at the Inn at Virginia Tech, located at 901 Prices Fork Rd.

The Virginia Tech Class of 2014 is proud to welcome retired Adm. Vernon Clark former Chief of Naval Operations as the guest speaker for the banquet. Clark led the Navy from July 2000 to July 2005 and was the second longest serving Chief of Naval Operations in history.

Immediately following the banquet, all cadets and invited guests will attend the Military Ball in the Commonwealth Ballroom in Squires Student Center, located at 290 College Ave. The Corps of Cadets Jazz Ensemble, the Southern Colonels, an ensemble group of the Highty-Tighties, will play introductory music and the Color Guard will present the colors. In addition, Gregory Guard, the corps precision rifle drill team, will perform a rifle spin routine.

All seniors and their guests will then be presented and proceed through a ceremonial saber arch provided by Sash and Saber, the Citizen-Leader Track Honor Society.

After the ball, the Corps of Cadets will celebrate the conclusion of Military Weekend with the firing of Skipper at 11 p.m. on the Drillfield, followed immediately by the playing of Silver Taps. Silver Taps is played by three buglers who will be located at the Pylons, the April 16th Memorial, and outside War Memorial Gym. All are welcome to observe.

The Senior Banquet and Military Ball are planned and organized by the Scabbard and Blade Military Honor Society. The top 10 percent of ROTC cadets are selected in their junior year for membership in this prestigious national organization.