Tigers who gathered in Columbia for Mizzou’s 104th Homecoming eagerly took part in established traditions: the world’s largest student-run blood drive, house decorations, a talent show, a fanfare-filled parade and festive tailgates. But we also stepped it up this year with special events and expressions of cultural pride, peace and campus-wide unity.

The 2015 Homecoming celebration marked the launch of the university’s new funding campaign, Mizzou: Our Time to Lead, which brought celebrity alumnae such as singer/songwriter Sheryl Crow, BS Ed ’84, and 1990 Miss America Debbye Turner Bell, DVM ’91, to campus for a kickoff event. It also inspired Crow’s sold-out concert benefiting the construction of a new School of Music building.

The 11th-ranked Florida Gators defeated Mizzou’s football team 21-3 but could not crush the spirit of the 70,767 Tigers fans cheering at the Homecoming game.

Relive some highlights from Homecoming week.

A crescent moon sets over the columns

The waning moon sets over the Columns near dawn on Saturday morning. Photo by Rob Hill

A student donates blood

Taylor Santel winces as she donates blood on in the Hearnes Center Fieldhouse. Photo by Mikala Compton

people eating and talking

Tiana Glass and Sequoyah Moore sit on the floor of the Multicultural Center during a potluck dinner with friends Shane Stinson and Jasmine Morgan. Photo by Lizz Cardwell

Legion of Black Collegians marching down the street.

The Legion of Black Collegians (LBC) and their allies participate in a memorial walk throughout campus. The event, “Uplift,” honored people who have lost their lives to violence and signified the solidarity of the community. Photo by Hanna Yowell

Ballons are released into the air

The Legion of Black Collegians and their supporters release balloons in memory of loved ones for the Upliift event during Homecoming week. Photo by Mikala Compton

 Silhouetted dancers pointing upward

The MU Percussion Dance Team kicks off the third day of the 2015 Homecoming Talent Production. Photo by Michael Cali

Talent show dancing

The MU Percussion Dance Team performs on the final day of the Homecoming talent competition. Photo by Michael Cali

audience members cheer after a dance performance

Emma Berry, a freshman Chi Omega member, cheers to opening videos at the 2015 Homecoming Talent Production. Photo by Michael Cali

A performer dressed as Ron Burgundy acts out a skit

A member of Gamma Phi Beta, dressed as Ron Burgundy from the movie “Anchorman,” performs in the self-produced play “The Truman Games.” Photo by Michael Cali

Students dance on stage

Students step it up at the Stroll-Off at Jesse Auditorium. The annual step show is a Mizzou Homecoming tradition. Photo by Hanna Yowell

Singer raising his hand after a performance

During the funding campaign kickoff gala for Mizzou donors, junior psychology major and wrestler J’den Cox performs an original song he wrote about his experiences at Mizzou. Cox is a two-time NCAA All-American. Photo by Nicholas Benner

Mizzou chancellor raises his glass for a toast.

Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin makes a toast among the guests, major donors and Mizzou supporters, gathered at the black-tie funding campaign kickoff event on the floor of Mizzou Arena. Photo by Nicholas Benner

mascot riles up the crowd

Truman the Tiger raises the spirit level from the stage of Traditions Plaza at the Friday night Spirit Rally. Photo by Rob Hill

students decorate windows

Erin Stump, a member of the Kappa Alpha Theta sorority, paints a green outline of the Missouri state map on the window of Kaldi’s Coffee. Members of fraternities and sororities painted the windows of downtown businesses to spread Mizzou pride during Homecoming week. Photo by Mikala Compton

man stirs kettle corn

Gabe Davis of the Bates County Mizzou Alumni Chapter pours kettle corn at the Homecoming Headquarters Open House Friday afternoon. Photo by Rob Hill

kid slides down slide

A future Tiger slides down the bounce-house slide on the Sigma Pi fraternity’s lot during House Decorations. In addition to the bounce houses, the brothers offered cotton candy, hosted a Chick-Fil-A booth and sold popcorn. Photo by Tanzi Propst

students perform a skit

From left, Mara Manion, 12, Hanna Juengermann, 12, and Jillian Larkin, 12, pose for a photo in the photo booth of Phi Mu, Lambda Chi Alpha and Alpha Chi Rho’s house decorations Friday. Photo by Tanzi Propst

musicians perform on stage

Mizzou alumna and nine-time Grammy winner Sheryl Crow performs a School of Music benefit concert at the Missouri Theatre Friday night. Photo by Nicholas Benner

Singer talks to crowd

Sheryl Crow talks to the crowd at a sold-out Missouri Theatre Friday night. Photo by Nicholas Benner

marching band in parade

The University of Missouri Golden Girls and Marching Mizzou head down Rollins Street at the start of the 2015 Mizzou Homecoming Parade. Photo by Nicholas Benner

people walking along parade route

Naomi Collier, a freshman majoring in parks, recreation and tourism, dances down Rollins Street with the Legion of Black Collegians. Photo by Michael Cali

man dressed as tiger yelling

Terin Williams, a senior chemical engineering student, roars from the back of the Alpha Phi Omega float. Photo by Michael Cali

antique car in parade

Judith Miller, dean of the University of Missouri Sinclair School of Nursing, waves to the parade crowd. Photo by Nicholas Benner

families watch the homecoming parade

Brooklyn Mathews waits with her father, Maddox, BS ’06, for the parade to arrive. Photo by Kevin Mathein

Students support the MU International Center by carrying the flags of the countries represented by students at Mizzou. Photo by Nicholas Benner

Students support the MU International Center by carrying the flags of the countries represented by students at Mizzou. Photo by Nicholas Benner

The Oscar Meyer Wiener Mobile

The Oscar Mayer Wienermobile sports a tiger tail. Photo by Nicholas Benner.

wrestlers practice outside

The wrestling team practices between the Hearnes Center and Faurot Field before the Homecoming football game. Photo by Shane Epping.

Wrestlers practice outside

The wrestling team practices between the Hearnes Center and Faurot Field before the homecoming football game. Photo by Shane Epping.

man playing tuba

Memorial Stadium and members of Marching Mizzou reflect in a sousaphone player’s horn during the Tiger Walk, Saturday afternoon. Photo by Tanzi Propst

tailgait games

Griffin Henry, 14, throws a cornhole bag from behind to his friend Stone Hewlett, 14, outside of Memorial Stadium before the stadium opens Saturday. Photo by Tanzi Propst

Tailgate scene

Brennan Hammers, a junior Agricultural Science major, grills burgers with the Independent Aggies before the Homecoming. The Independent Aggies are a non-greek organization for students in the agricultural sciences. Photo by Kevin Mathein.

bandleader

A Marching Mizzou Alumni Band member takes his position as drum major. Photo by Shane Epping

fireworks fire as the marching band plays

Marching Mizzou performs as fireworks explode on the north end of Memorial Stadium before action begins on Faurot Field. Photo by Shane Epping.

mascot pumping up crowd

Truman the Tiger spins his tail and points to Tiger’s Lair as students jump and yell for the Tigers as they face the Florida Gators, Saturday afternoon. Photo by Tanzi Propst

football players running onto the field

The Tigers take the field. Photo by Kevin Mathein

football fans cheering

Tiger’s Lair comes alive moments before kickoff. Photo by Kevin Mathein

The sun sets over Memorial Stadium

A sunset surrounds Memorial Stadium. Photo by Shane Epping

Football line of scrimmage before the snap

Mizzou and Florida face off. Photo by Shane Epping

football player catching pass

Mizzou running back Russell Hansborough makes a catch. Photo by Tanzi Propst

A canon fires after a Mizzou field goal

ROTC members fire Mizzou’s cannon after a field goal. Mizzou alumnus and local artist David Spear hand-painted the cannon as a tiger. Photo by Shane Epping

Quarterback sets his feet to pass

Drew Lock looks for an open receiver. Photo by Shane Epping

Football players make a tackle

Mizzou’s defense holds Florida’s offense on a play early in the game. Photo by Shane Epping

dancer holding pom

A Mizzou Golden Girl waits to run onto the field to begin the pre-game homecoming show Saturday on Faurot Field. Photo by Tanzi Propst

Koney Ealy waves to the crowd

Mizzou alumnus Kony Ealy, defensive end for the Carolina Panthers, waves to the crowd. Photo by Shane Epping

homecoming king being crowned

Payton Head is crowned the 2015 homecoming king. Photo by Kevin Mathein

Homecoming court

The 2015 Homecoming royalty pose for photos. Allison Fitts and Payton Head are named queen and king. Photo by Shane Epping

Baton twirler waves fire batons

Twirler Lindsey McCormick plays with fire during halftime. Photo by Shane Epping.

defensive back tackles running back

Linebacker Kentrell Brothers tackles running back Kelvin Taylor. Photo by Shane Epping

Marching band plays in the stands

Members of Marching Mizzou excite a crowd of more than 70,000 fans with their music. Photo by Shane Epping

Football fans waving a flag

Students shake a “Mizzou: Our Time to Lead” banner Saturday at Memorial Stadium. Photo by Kevin Mathein

football players catching a pass

Wesley Leftwich, Mizzou’s wide receiver, jumps to catch the ball before a Florida defensive player is able to intercept the ball. Photo by Tanzi Propst

Quarterback is sacked

Defensive lineman Marcell Frazier and linebacker Donavin Newsom celebrate a sack against quarterback Will Grier. Photo by Shane Epping.

Running back runs for good yardage

Tailback Russell Hansbrough runs for a gain. Photo by Shane Epping

Football player gets tackled

Cornerback John Gibson tackles wide receiver Demarcus Robinson. Photo by Shane Epping

football fans react to game

Mizzou and Florida fans show their true colors. Photo by Shane Epping