|Read More Homepage Stories|
In an age when participation happens with a click and spirit is expressed with a "like," there are those who ache for authenticity and tradition. Real crowds, not crowdsourcing. Soles on sidewalks, not streetscapes, and the pierce of a whistle not delivered through earbuds.
To those we say, "Welcome to Bulldog Country."
From football to Fallon-inspired shenanigans, each day of this year's homecoming week offers a menu of options carefully crafted by a committee focused on fun.
|The 2013 parade marked a resurgence of this homecoming tradition|
Bulldog pride will infiltrate Downtown Duluth on Thursday, October 16 at 6 p.m. when UMD’s homecoming parade hits Superior Street. The route follows the downtown waterfront between 1st Avenue West and 4th Avenue West and is expected to last about an hour.
After a forty-year absence, the parade returned last year and, despite the downpour, was enthusiastically received. “It’s all about connecting with our community,” explains Lisa Pratt, alumni relations director. “This isn’t just a campus celebration; it’s an event for everyone in Bulldog country.”
A mascot from the way-back machine will be vying for Champ's spotlight during the parade. The Maroon Loon, of whom it was said, "He soars with a style all his own. A bumbling bird who pecks away at the funny bone of arena audiences."
This will be the Maroon Loon's first appearance since 2010, when he popped out of the zamboni for a surprise skate around the DECC during the Bulldog's last game in the old arena.
The Grand Marshals for the event, Big Dave Wave and the Ripples, will bring their super popular, super danceable funk/soul/blues sound to the parade. Comprised of 70% alumni, Peter Knutson, Matt Wasmund, Shannon Kroenke, David Rode, Alex Nordehn, Steve Rogers, and "Big Wave" Dave Adams are looking forward to donning maroon and gold once again, “We love making music and helping people get down in the Duluth area, and we're honored to be representing UMD in the homecoming parade,” says Dave. “It's going to be a blast!”
The Grand Marshals will barely have a chance to catch their breath after the parade before taking the stage at 7 p.m. at Dubh Linn's Irish Pub, 109 W. Superior Street, for an all-ages show that's free and open to the public.
Name your favorite Bulldog team and there's a great chance you'll be able to see them during homecoming week. Volleyball, soccer, hockey, and football athletes will all be suiting up for home games. The football game on Saturday, October 18 includes the much appreciated invitation to tailgate before the 1:05 p.m. matchup against Northern State.
Greek Life is hosting a little competition before the competition. Chariots will race across the Stadium Apartments lawn, continuing the homecoming groundwork laid out by their brothers and sisters before them.
For those who prefer off-the-grid to the gridiron, two options: Rec Sports is hosting the Homecoming 5K Trail Run on Saturday, October 18 and the Mechanical Engineering Club offers cardboard boat racing on Wednesday, October 15.
Kirby's muse for homecoming week, Mr. Jimmy Fallon, would be proud of the lunchtime goings on - like a basketball shoot out and "hot dog in a hole." A lip sync battle will beckon those don't let tone deafness stop them from being deft.
"Corn is beacon enough," say Kirby Program Board and Student Association Board members. They've ordered 1,000 ears and plenty of butter for the Corn Roast on Wednesday, October 13. For the first time ever, the festivities will be held on Kirby Terrace instead of Griggs Beach, pulling this midwest staple out of the shadows of the dorms and into the October sunshine for all to enjoy.
Story by Lori C. Melton October, 2014
Did you find what you were looking for? YES NO