Homecoming 2017 brings Columbia together
Mizzou fans, friends and alumni all crowded the streets of Columbia this past weekend to celebrate Homecoming 2017. It’s been 106 years since Chester Brewer first invited alumni to return home for the Missouri-Kansas football game, and the tradition has only grown since then. The festivities began early this year, with the annual kick-off parade set for a 7:30 a.m. start time. Despite the early morning, Tiger fans and their families showed up in droves to cheer on the caravan of elaborately decorated floats passing by.
Later that morning, Tigers congregated around Memorial Stadium to participate in early morning tailgates before heading inside to watch the first Tiger home game in weeks. The Tigers defeated the Idaho Vandals 68-21, and the team was happy to celebrate with the students after the victory!
At halftime 20 royalty candidates were introduced to the crowd. The couples walked across the field surrounded by the student-run Homecoming Steering Committee and Marching Mizzou. Tori Schafer, senior majoring in political science with a minor in journalism, and Sean Earl, senior in electrical engineering with minors in mathematics and political science, were named as this year's Homecoming Queen and King.
In the week leading up to Homecoming, the entire campus and the surrounding community was buzzing with activity. Student groups “decorated the district” by painting images of campus traditions on business store fronts in downtown Columbia. The annual Step Show, a competition to see which fraternity and sorority strolls and steps the best rocked Jesse Auditorium. A three-day long talent show highlighted the best of the best Mizzou traditions.
A special treat for Mizzou fans was the renewed, even for just one year, Border War basketball game between Mizzou and the University of Kansas. The Showdown for Relief brought more than 9,000 Tiger fans to the Sprint Center in Kansas City. With half the crowd sporting Black and Gold, the energy for an exciting year of Mizzou Basketball was obvious. The Tigers managed to come within 6 points of beating their former foes, and the fans loved every minute of it. Best yet, the exhibition game raised more than $1.75 million for hurricane relief, helping communities and families from Puerto Rico to Texas. It was an amazing end to an amazing Homecoming weekend.