The Chase photo: Bryan Hahn
Eastern New Mexico University held their annual Homecoming events the week of Sept. 23 through 28. The week consisted of events including Powderpuff Football, Songfest, golf tournaments, the Hispanic Rey y Reina competition, a pep rally, a bonfire, alumni events, the Annual Homecoming Parade, ENMU Tailgate and Greyhound Football vs. Texas A&M-Kingsville.
Valencia Owens, a sophomore at ENMU, went to all of the homecoming festivities. She said that the week went well. “There was a lot of good energy at the events,” she said. Owens stated that tailgating was hectic, but she still had a great time with Associated Students Activities Board, a student organization that she is involved with. She said ASAB helped with Songfest on Monday, Sept. 23. “We ran Songfest and introduced the groups performing.” She added that she and ASAB helped Student Government with the bonfire. Owens also said that it was great to see all the alumni in attendance.
Melissa Sena, Senior Administrative Assistant of Alumni Affairs at ENMU, said Alumni Affairs helped with three reunions which include class of 1969, 1994 and 2009. “We called many people to see if they would attend, and 67 from all three classes came for the festivities. We did a lunch for them and organized a float for those that wanted to ride in the parade.” She stated that planning for this took three months. Some of the planning included ordering food, shirts, decorations and preparing a slide show. The theme of ENMU Homecoming this year was “Ancient Civilizations,” and many people got involved in the festivities by creating floats to enter in the Homecoming Parade. “Eight Eastern organizations made floats to use in the parade, and there were 48 community entries.”
Sena started getting permits since June to make the parade possible. Sena said the city permit comes quickly, but the state often takes longer. After she received the permits, Sena sent out letters to the community to invite participants. She said Alumni Affairs also coordinated for all of the regents, the ENMU President, award winners, alumni winners, foundation winners, Philanthropist of the Year, and Business of the Year to be in the parade. These are the people who ride in the classic cars during the parade. ENMU President Jeff Elwell, ENMU’s Board of Regents and all the award winners were contacted beforehand about a ride in the parade. There were different categories for floats to win a trophy. Sena added that Alumni Affairs also helped with tailgating before the game. They also helped with funding for a food truck and face painting during the tailgate.
Kagan West, a cheerleader at ENMU, went to all of the festivities and said that the events were great. “We did the dog walk for the bonfire, which is when you walk in with the football players for the bonfire.” She said that her and her team also participated in the parade on Saturday where they threw candy to kids. She stated that even though they got rained on at the football game, it was a great time performing and cheering on the team.