Homecoming festivities begin on campus

The UNA football team takes the field Oct. 15 for its 2016 homecoming game against Shorter, but the festivities prior to the game go beyond the field.

University Program Council Vice President Nic Smith represents UNA students on the homecoming committee and helped schedule many new events for this year’s homecoming.

The university has scheduled numerous events for students and alumni, so both can enjoy the weekend.

For students, the fun starts early, as each day through the week of Oct. 10-14 will represent a different day.

This year, SGA is putting a different spin on the traditional bonfire, said Student Government Association President Sarah Green.

On Friday, UNA will hold a pep rally and bonfire at 9 p.m. at Cross Point Field at 1350 Cox Creek Pkwy. Instead of hosting a band or musician, UPC scheduled UNA alumnus Kekoria Greer, a.k.a. “D.J. Keeks,” for the night’s entertainment, Green said.

“Any time KeKe can come back for anything, especially to D.J., I think we’re all about it,” Green said. “She’s so good, and people love her. People will show up at of the most random places to hear her D.J.”

That same day, UPC is having their “Swag Wagon” day. Members of UPC will drive a golf cart all across campus with various swag items, including homecoming t-shirts.

Saturday morning will begin with the 2016 UNA Athletic Hall of Fame induction ceremony at 9 a.m. in the Guillot University Center. UNA will induct Vanessa Ferretti, Ashley Moffitt, Kent Sullivan and Robert Steele, all former standout athletes.

The homecoming parade in Downtown Florence will follow at 11 a.m

But Homecoming week kicks off with Madness Monday which includes a scavenger hunt on campus.

“We will be hiding mason jars on campus and for the students who find them, they will be given a gift basket full of our new swag items,” Smith said in an email.

The following day is “Can’t be Tamed Tuesday,” where UPC encourages students to use the hashtag “#unauntamed” in a social media challenge.

“We’ll have gift baskets with swag items that we have for the people with the catchiest caption or picture,” Smith said.

“That’s all about getting students to the amphitheater and just hanging out and talking to them,” Smith said. “Right now, we’re at that time of the semester where students are getting stressed out. It’s all about just getting students to enjoy homecoming.”

Green said Smith did an excellent job of putting together a well-planned docket of events.

“With this homecoming stuff, he has just blown my mind,” she said. “You can so tell he just wants to serve the students and wants to see the students get involved.”

Sophomore Paul Brumlow said he is excited to become involved in this year’s Homecoming festivities.

“I do enjoy Homecoming,” Brumlow said. “My favorite part is the exuberance of school spirit. I have not been to the parade, but I look forward to it.”

After the parade on Saturday, the festivities will head to Braly Stadium at 3 p.m., as a pre-game party will take place at Spirit Hill. Kirkman Combo will perform music at this time.

Two hours prior to kickoff, the football team will enter the stadium through the “Lion Walk,” where fans can greet their favorite players and coaches with high fives and “good-luck’s”

The Pride of Dixie will perform their pre-game show at 5:20 p.m. The game will then kickoff at 6 p.m. where the Lions look to improve to a 4-1 record against a winless Shorter Hawks team.