Homecoming: it’s not a sprint, it’s a marathon

Emily Miller, Contributor

Whether it’s your first Homecoming or your last here at Tarleton State University, it is easily one of the most anticipated weeks of the fall semester. Homecoming this year will be from Oct. 14-20, with it just days away here are some tips and tricks to survive the week.

Tip #1 Balance is Key

It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of Homecoming especially your first one. Don’t forget that most midterms fall on the week of Homecoming. Regardless if you have midterms the week of or not, don’t forget that your grades can easily plunder if you don’t keep up with your school work.

Tip #2 Participation Matters

Classes might still be going on and your grades are important but don’t get too caught up in your classwork that you miss out on all the fun events that Homecoming has to offer.

Tip #3 “Hydrate Hydrate Hydrate”

From the wise words of Momma T remember to drink plenty of water and stay hydrated no matter what event you attend during Homecoming Week.

Tip #4 Lighting of the Smokestack

Lighting of the Smokestack is the perfect way to kickoff Homecoming week on Sunday, Oct. 14. The event starts at 6 p.m. with a concert, free food and games. President of Tarleton State University Dominic Dottavio leads this event and it is definitely worth attending but get there at least 30 minutes early to get in line for the free food.

Tip #5 Silver Bugle Hunt

The Silver Bugle Hunt will test you and your friend’s knowledge surrounding Tarleton and is the perfect event to put it to the test. This year it will be held on Monday Oct. 15. Teams can be up to four people so grab three of your friends, sorority sisters, or fraternity brothers and get studying. Once you’re registered on Tarleton’s website be at the Trogdon House by 6 p.m.

Tip #6 Launching of the Ducks/Purple Out Picnic

Launching of the ducks is a great way to kickoff homecoming by writing your goals on the duck and releasing them in the fountains out in front of the Nursing Building on Tuesday Oct. 16 at 5 p.m. Right after Launching of the Ducks hang out at the Purple Out Picnic. This has been a Tradition since 2003 has been providing free food, music and the competition of who can show the most spirit by wearing the most purple. The Homecoming Court Nominees are introduced and participate in a Q&A.

Tip #7 Yell Contest

Going to watch Yell Contest is a great way to support your friends that are in sororities and fraternities perform original chants with step and dance moves in front of judges and the student body. The winning team gets to show off their pride by helping kick off the beating

the drum directly after the Plowboys. Yell will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 17 at 9 p.m. It’s important to get to Wisdom Gym early as the gym has a maximum capacity. Getting there at least an hour to two hours early gives you great chances of getting a seat.

Tip #8 Snake Dance

Directly after Yell Contest is the Snake Dance. Snake Dance is where students lock arms and snake their way to the student center the official kick off Beating of the Drum. It’s smart to wear tennis shoes because the snake dance can easily turn into a snaking sprint.

Tip #9 Beating of the Drum

Beating of the Drum is a great way for every organization and student to get involved in a tradition. This event is kicked off Wednesday night with the Plowboys and goes until kickoff at the Texan Football game the following Saturday evening. Every organization can sign up for a time slot to beat the drum. Make sure to dress appropriately for your shift because it can get cold if you’re beating the drum at 3 a.m.

Tip #10 Wisdom Madness/Purple Pancakes

Formerly known as “Midnight Madness” Wisdom Madness will be held on Thursday, Oct. 18 at 7 p.m. in Wisdom Gym. This is a perfect event to check out Tarleton’s Basketball Teams and get them pumped up for their upcoming season. This event has high attendance so it’s important to get their early to get a good seat. Directly following Wisdom Madness at 10:30 p.m. in the Dining Hall will be Purple Pancakes formerly known as the event “Midnight Breakfast”. This event is sponsored by the Student Government Association’s Executive Cabinet and Freshmen Representative Council. They spend countless hours planning, prepping, cooking and serving the delicious purple pancakes.

Tip #11 L.V. Risinger Memorial Bonfire

Tarleton’s own Plowboys and volunteers spend countless hours weeks before Homecoming to build the ginormous bonfire held on Friday, Oct. 19 at 7 p.m. at the College Farm. Students, their families and friends gather to watch the ceremony and lighting of the bonfire. Before attending take into consideration that there will be no parking allowed at the college farm, Tarleton will be providing shuttles starting at 5:30 p.m. and ending at 11 p.m. This event also has security, alcohol and bags will not be allowed on the premises or on the shuttles. Safety is extremely important at the event so please remember to be respectful of those around you and to have fun.  Chair of the 2018 Student Homecoming Committee Lizzie Marshall stated, “with bonfire being such a large event, it is going to be easiest that we don’t have parking out at the farm due to the limited space, as well as the danger it can cause with people crossing over a major road. Stephenville PD as well as UPD just feel that it would be safer for the people attending to be shuttled from campus!”

Tip #12 Homecoming Tailgate/Football Game

Tailgate is the perfect opportunity to hang out and cookout with your friends and family outside of Memorial Stadium. The tailgate starts at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 20 and continues until kickoff around 6 p.m. for the Texan Football game against Texas A&M – Kingsville. During Halftime of the Football game the Homecoming King and Queen will be announced. Make sure to go out and show your Tarleton pride and support your favorite Football team.

Tip #13 Buddy System

All throughout Homecoming it’s important to have a good time but also remember to stand behind Tarleton’s Core Values and take care of not only yourself but the others around you. Senior Jarrett Bopp said “Make sure to have a safe ride to all the events, whether it’s a desginated driver, using Lyft, or taking the shuttle. Always stick with a friend, use the buddy system, and take care of each other.”

Tip #14 Surviving as an Alumni

Homecoming doesn’t end when your graduate. Tarleton prides itself in the statement that the gates are always open. When you graduate it’s important to remember that you’re still a part of Tarleton’s family. Alumni Katy Seiferman said, “It’s important to continue to come to homecoming events as an alumnus because it keeps continuing tradition and allows alumni to share that tradition with their new families or people that may not have gone to Tarleton.”

Tip #15 Have Fun

You will make so many memories during Homecoming week, and each year is different. If you went to events last year, go to those events every year because they change and are different each time. No matter who you are, you have a place at Tarleton and this one-week is dedicating to getting together and celebrating the school we attend, the traditions behind it and the history of it all. Junior Hailey Mott said “Homecoming is one of the most exciting weeks at Tarleton and the best way to get through the week is simply to attend all the events! By going to every event you’ll make so many memories, some of my favorite memories are from Homecoming week!”