Students are preparing for a week of late-night painting, building, dancing, and bonding.
Homecoming kick-off is scheduled for 8 p.m. tonight in Henry J. Freede Wellness and Activity Center. Other Homecoming events will take place Nov. 3-8.
“Homecoming is really important because it brings all the alumni back to campus, and undergraduates, graduates, law students, and alumni get together to celebrate in the success of their university,” said Colbi Beam, assistant director of student development. “To be able to do that as a larger community is really special.”
The theme, “A Great Big Adventure,” was announced earlier this month. Organizations must participate in the Homecoming events with this theme in mind if they want to compete for sweepstakes.
“They picked a broad theme so that it could be reflected in a variety of different ways,” Beam said. “Most organizations that participate keep that a secret until the week of.”
Homecoming is driven by competition and a desire to win, so most organizations put in a lot of time and effort into the week. There will be several events in which organizations must follow the theme, including window painting, banner design, lip sync, and spirit structure.
Mackenzie Kelly, entertainment business senior and Homecoming commissioner, said a significant rule change this year is the allotment of time to rehearse per week. The Homecoming executive committee decided to limit practice time to 15 hours a week this year.
“People are always so tired during Homecoming and they’re up so late,” she said. “We’re trying to fix that so people will go to class and won’t be so exhausted during class.”
There also will be no basketball game this year due to scheduling conflicts. Instead, a new required event with Uptown 23rd will be introduced. Restaurants will offer discounts and freebies for members of the campus community.
Kelly said some people are upset about the lack of a game but the basketball team will get to participate in Homecoming this year. Even though it will be different, people will still have a lot of fun, Kelly said.
“This event is not only so people can get more points, but so we can really involved the district,” she said. “They want to be involved with OCU, so it works well for both sides.”
Homecoming is known to be a time where students are busy with the many activities and events happening.
The window party is scheduled for Sunday. The Uptown 23rd event is scheduled for 6 to 8 p.m. Nov. 5. Floats are due at noon on Nov. 7 and will be on the quad throughout the day. Lip sync is scheduled for 8 p.m. Nov. 7 in Henry J. Freede Wellness and Activity Center. The winners of the competitions and Homecoming King and Queen will be announced after the Lip Sync competition.
“Although it is really competitive, I think it brings people together on campus because everybody loves Homecoming,” Kelly said. “It is a lot of hard work, but I think it’s really fun. Not only organizations come together, but everybody comes together to pep up and praise the school.”