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SGA Prepares for Homecoming Week Oct. 8-13

Brooke Burger

   The Student Government Association discussed Homecoming Week during its last meeting before the event Tuesday, Sept. 25.  The group met in the Caucus Room of the John F. Gibson University Center to discuss the events to take place Oct. 8 – 13. 

   “Homecoming is our main goal,” SGA President Landon Grimes said during the meeting. 

   The group selected “Safari Showdown” for this year’s theme. Unlike last year, Homecoming Week will not include individual themed days, such as Pajama Day or Wacky Day. The group also made other changes for this year’s homecoming celebrations. 

   According to Grimes, organizations and groups will have to enter a float in order to participate in the parade. They will still allow decorated cars for the Homecoming Court. 

   Grimes also said the group inquired into moving the parade to the square in town, where it took place in the past. However, the group ran into too many traffic issues and decided to keep the parade on campus. 

   The Homecoming Parade will begin at 12:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 11. The parade will start at the Fine Arts Center and make its way to the University Center lawn where a pep rally, featuring band and cheerleader performances, will take place. 

   SGA also scheduled several other events for Homecoming Week. The group selected traditional activities, such as the Spirit Walls, but added a new twist in some cases. They also chose a few new activities and features for students to enjoy. 

   Monday, Oct. 8 from 10:30 a.m. – 6:30 p.m. students can enjoy painting Spirit Walls on the University Center lawn. 

   Students who enjoy cooking can compete in a cook-off Tuesday, Oct. 9 from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. The event will take place on the University Center for those who enjoy eating more than cooking. The cook-off will include tailgating-type foods such as chicken, barbeque, pork and hamburgers. Each individual or organization must provide their own food and grilling equipment, but SGA will provide the charcoal and lighter fluid.

   Students can view “We Are Marshall” (2006) Tuesday night at 7 p.m. on the Fine Arts Center lawn if the weather permits. The film, starring Matthew McConaughey, follows a coach and his players struggling to keep their university’s football program alive after a plane crash kills most of the team. 

   Wednesday, Oct. 10 students can participate in an X-box Challenge or ride a flight simulator on the University Center lawn. From 6 - 10 p.m., Meet and Greet the Greeks will take place on the sand volleyball courts and will include a canned food drive.

   Other events Thursday night include a bonfire and block party. Bonfire activities will begin at 7 p.m., and a pep rally will follow the lighting of the fire. Students can attend a block party on the FAC lawn after the bonfire concludes.

   Friday, Oct. 12, SGA will sponsor a drunk driving simulator from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. in the U.C. Green Room. Friday evening starting at 7 p.m., students can view "Remember the Titans" on the Fine Arts Center lawn if the weather permits. 

   In “Remember the Titans” (2000), director Boaz Yakin tackles race issues in the 1970s and shows the determination of a high school football team to find common ground, overcome differences and work together as a winning team. 

   SGA and SAB will fund prizes for each day of Homecoming Monday through Friday. They will offer a final prize for the entire week at the end of the Homecoming events. Students will have the chance to win one of six prizes by attending the events.

   For entry forms, rules and regulations or for more information on any of the scheduled events, contact Lindsey Kight, director of Student Programs and Activities. Students can contact Kight at 460-1396 or

   Saturday, Oct. 13 the Boll Weevils will face the North Alabama Lion’s at 3 p.m. at the "Convoy" Leslie Cotton Boll Stadium.  Tailgating will take place from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. around Weevil Pond. The Weevil Walk of Champions will begin at 1 p.m.. and will include a pep rally east of Weevil Pond.

   The pre-game ceremonies will begin at 2:30 p.m. at the stadium and will include the presentation of the 2007 Homecoming Court and the Coronation of the Homecoming Queen. During the halftime show, the marching band will perform and the 2007 Sports Hall of Fame inductees and All-Americans in all sports will receive recognition.

   While planning activities for Homecoming, the members also discussed campus involvement. The five attending members discussed problems with participation and ways to increase attendance. 

   The group started by discussing ways to increase attendance at sporting events. The first idea presented involved purchasing green T-shirts to give away at each of the major sporting events, including football, baseball, softball and volleyball. However, when the cost proved too expensive, the group moved on to another solution – money. 

   SGA and the Student Activities Board gave away a $100 gift certificate at the second home game, and the members plan to do that per athletic team. If they receive permission and have the appropriate funds, the group would like to start offering the $100 gift certificate at the next volleyball game. 

   However, SGA and SAB cannot offer $100 for every event on campus. So, the question becomes how to get attendance up at other, lesser known events on campus.  

   According to Grimes, no one attended the first movie showing Sept. 17 except Kight. Constitution Day held the same day also saw a weak turnout of students, despite offering a raffle. 

   “People don’t read e-mails, sidewalk chalk or posters,” SGA Secretary Ben Higginbotham said. “You’re best bet is Facebook and MySpace.” 

   The members decided, if possible, they will create an SGA/SAB Facebook group in order to inform students about upcoming events. They discussed creating a master calendar of events to link on the University Web page, as well. 

   “If we could get our Greeks involved, look at how many people that is,” Grimes said, offering further suggestions for increasing participation around campus. 

   Greek Representative John Thompson agreed that increasing Greek participation would help and said creating an award for Greeks based on campus involvement could increase Greek attendance at events. 

   “Something like that would definitely raise participation,” he said. 

   The group also discussed plans different activities and events they could schedule to attract student interest and raise participation. Some ideas included: 

         Speaker – The group would like to feature a big-name speaker in the spring. Grimes said the group has tried to contact several people.

They contacted Hilary Clinton’s group, but discovered the amount of security required to bring a presidential candidate to campus would prove too problematic. They also contacted Oprah Winfrey, but have yet to hear back from the television talk-show star.

However, the group did contact Erin Gruwell, the teacher portrayed by Hilary Swank in the movie “Freedom Writers” (2007). SGA would have to raise $15,000 to book Gruwell. Despite the high cost, Grimes said the group could receive help from grants, other divisions on campus, other schools in the area, donations and fundraisers. 

         Sporting Event T-shirts – Although the group figured the total cost to be too expensive, the idea is not a bust. If the athletics department could help with the costs, they could provide T-shirts to those attending the athletic events. However, SGA will have to pursue this issue with the coaches. 

         Movie Makers – According to Higginbotham, several students have asked about Movie Makers, an event that allows students to make their own music video. The group will consider bringing this activity back to campus. 

   The group also discussed funds. According to Grimes, SGA receives the majority of its funds from student fees, which total approximately $5 per student. Therefore, the SGA budget fluctuates with enrollment numbers even thought it receives a portion of its funds from the general budget.

   The Student Government Association and Student Activities Board meet the second Tuesday every month at 12:40 p.m. in the U.C. Caucus Room. All students are invited and encouraged to attend. 


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ŠThe Voice 2007
09/15/2007 05:56:16 PM —