The Tufts school mascot is Jumbo the
elephant, in honor of a major donation from circus owner P.T. Barnum in 1882. The stuffed remains of Barnum's Jumbo the elephant were on display in the basement of Barnum Hall, until the building burned down in 1974. Currently a
plaster-statue likeness of Jumbo resides on
the academic quad.A Light on the Hill Award has been established to annually recognize distinguished Tufts alumni. Recent recipients have been
Nick Birnback, Bill Richardson, and Rob Burnett.Every year, right before the reading period preceding winter exams, there is a Naked Quad Run. It involves several hundred
variously intoxicated students getting naked and running around the quad for perhaps
a half-hour. The run has been held for many years now, although the 2002 run generated some
controversy and fears of its end when several students were injured and President Bacow publicly denounced it. In 2003 the administration worked to ensure the safety of the event.Right before the reading period preceding spring exams, there is also the annual Spring Fling. This event is always quite
expensive (in the tens of thousands of dollars) and many bands are invited to play for the student body outside, free of charge.
There was much disappointment when the 2003 show was unceremoniously canceled because of rain. In 2004, The Roots, Less Than Jake, and several other
bands made an appearance.