Free mugs, chalk art contest, parade: Schedule of events for KU’s 107th Homecoming

photo by: Ashley Hocking

Big Jay waves at the crowd during the KU homecoming parade on Massachusetts Street on Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018.

The University of Kansas’ 107th Homecoming week kicks off Saturday and concludes a week later, the day of the football game against Texas Tech University.

This year’s theme is “Far Above the Golden Valley.”

Keon Stowers, development officer for the KU Alumni Association, led efforts in planning the Homecoming events with Ally Stanton, director of student programs. Stowers switched roles at the university two weeks ago. Formerly, he was assistant director of student programs.

“As a former student athlete, I’m super excited to be working on Homecoming,” said Stowers, a two-time captain of the KU football team who graduated in 2015.

He said it was “fulfilling” to now plan Homecoming for KU as a staff member and that it’s exciting to “continue to engage our university.”

Featured events include the “Great Mug Giveaway,” the biennial black alumni reunion weekend and Friday’s Homecoming parade, with Chancellor Douglas Girod acting as the grand marshal.

Previous grand marshals — a position given to alumni, students, faculty or staff members whose achievements have added to KU’s prominence and strengthened KU’s traditions — have included former Gov. Kathleen Sebelius and comedian Rob Riggle.

All events are open to the public, Stowers said, but some only in a viewing capacity. The “Chalk & Rock” event, for example, is only for student groups and campus organizations to participate in, but anyone can view their chalk creations outside Wescoe Beach Tuesday afternoon.

Stowers said he’d be happy to see their six months of work planning Homecoming events come to fruition, “but as an event planner, you check the box and move on to the next event.”

Here’s the full list of Homecoming week activities:

•Saturday, Oct. 19

Homecoming Kickoff & Food Fest

5:30-7:30 p.m.

Adams Alumni Center

Participants can enjoy food from the restaurant partners of the Student Alumni Network (among them: Jefferson’s wings and Papa Keno’s pizza) while listening to live performances by KU bands. Free Homecoming T-shirts will be available.

•Monday, Oct. 21

Decor Competition

Student groups and campus organizations have the day to decorate their home on campus according to the Homecoming theme. Judging will take place at 5 p.m. and winners will be announced later in the evening on social media.

•Tuesday, Oct. 22

Chalk & Rock

9 a.m.-4 p.m.

Wescoe Beach

This historic Homecoming event involves student groups and campus organizations creating chalk murals that represent themselves and the Homecoming theme on Wescoe Beach.

•Wednesday, Oct. 23

Jayhawk Jingles

5:30-7 p.m.

Adams Alumni Center

Student groups will compete to create the best Jayhawk-themed skits or musical performances.

NPHC Divine Nine Plot Dedication

5:30-7:30 p.m.

Burge Union Commons

This dedication ceremony will highlight the National Pan-Hellenic Council chapters at KU.

•Thursday, Oct. 24

TRIO SES & STEM Great Mug Giveaway

9 a.m.-2 p.m.

Strong Hall, Rooms 6 & 7

Enjoy hot chocolate and cider in a free mug of your choosing from over 500 options.

UNIV 101 Mentoring Event

3-4 p.m.

Adams Alumni Center

This event is only for first-year students enrolled in UNIV 101 classes. KU alumni will discuss their first years at KU.

•Friday, Oct. 25-Saturday, Oct. 26

KU Black Alumni Reunion Weekend

This biennial two-day event features a campus bus tour, a meet-and-greet with Girod, an awards reception and a tailgate hosted by the men of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, among other events.

•Friday, Oct. 25

SAN Home Football Friday

11 a.m.-1 p.m.

KU students can enjoy food from Salty Iguana and Hot Box Cookies at the Adams Alumni Center.

Homecoming Parade

5 p.m.

The parade will take place on Massachusetts Street in downtown Lawrence. It will begin at South Park and end at Seventh and Massachusetts.

•Saturday, Oct. 26

KU vs. Texas Tech Football Game

6 p.m.

David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium

At halftime, three Homecoming awards will be presented to outstanding students and alumni.

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