Tarleton’s first Division 1 homecoming could mean new traditions


Cassie Labay

Haylee Hering and Payton Holmgreen, education majors and Phi Mu alumna, at the tailgate for the football game against Dixie St. on Feb. 27, 2021.

Homecoming at Tarleton State University is set to kick off on Monday, March 15, 2021 with two events. The Faculty, Staff and Alumni Luncheon is set for 11:30 a.m. in the Barry B. Thompson Student Center Ballrooms and the S’mores Kick Off is set for 9 p.m. on the Trogdon House Lawn. With Tarleton’s move to Division 1 and the expected growth of the student population, homecoming is expected to be bigger than ever before and is expected to continue to grow.
Other Division 1 schools tend to go all out for homecoming and if Tarleton is to keep up with these high expectations, we can expect new traditions to make their way into our week of celebrations.
For example, the S’mores Kick Off is a new tradition that President James Hurley and First Lady Kindall Hurley started last semester during Tarleton’s Spirit week.
“[The Midnight S’mores] was [Kindall’s] idea, and from what we gather that had not occurred before. We want to embed that each year and long after we’re gone we hope that someone will continue the homecoming kick off weekend. [We do the kick off] on either Sunday or Monday night with the S’mores and Dublin sodas,” Dr. Hurley said.
Students at the football tailgate before the game against Dixie St. on Feb. 27, 2021 had their own opinions on what new homecoming traditions they would like to see Tarleton put into place.
“Yell contest [is my favorite current homecoming tradition] for sure [but if I had to come up with a new tradition it would be an] Alumni Football game,” Phi Mu alumna, Payton Holmgreen said.
Some of the ideas could be easy for students to implement on their own as unofficial traditions for example a Cornhole competition.
“[I think we should have] a prank week, where all throughout the week we do pranks against people,” Freshman, Caroline Gilley said.
Other students were happy with the traditions that homecoming at Tarleton already has.

Freshman Caroline Gilley at the tailgate for the football game against Dixie St. on Feb. 27, 2021. (Cassie Labay)

“[We] have so many traditions already, I just want to actually have the traditions the way they were supposed to be,” Alpha Gamma Rho member, Kyle Almand said. “I don’t think that we’re ready for a new tradition, I think we just need to get up and go [ with the ones that we have].”
“[My favorite homecoming tradition would] probably be bonfire for sure,” Brett Rudolph said.

Drake Jackson and Brett Rudolph at the tailgate for the football game against Dixie St. on Feb. 27, 2021. (Cassie Labay)

Overall, most students just want to return to Tarleton’s regular homecoming events.
“At least for this year [I want us to] lift all COVID-19 restrictions and have a huge tailgate party,” Drake Jackson said.
Tarleton’s other homecoming events on the Stephenville campus include Purple Pancakes on Tuesday, March 16, at 10 p.m. outside of the Dining hall, Yell Contest on Wednesday, March 17, at 9 p.m. in Memorial Stadium, Purple Poo 100 Year Celebration and Concert on Thursday, March 18, at 6 p.m. at the Intramural Complex and the Bonfire on Friday, March 19, at 8 p.m. at the Tarleton Agriculture Center.
Events on the Fort Worth campus include Purple Pancakes on the Front Lawn from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. on Thursday, March 18.
The Midlothian Campus will have Launching of the Ducks from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Thursday, March 18, at the Common Area Building #2 Navarro College.
The Waco campus will have Homecoming Hoedown from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Wednesday, March 17, at the MAC Quad and Launching of the Ducks from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. at the Waco PAC Fountain on the same day.
Be sure to come out and support your Tarleton Texans on game day March 20, at 6 p.m. at Memorial Stadium.