No matter who you are, or where you live in Columbia, Homecoming is a big deal. Everyone, to some degree, is involved. Whether they are helping make decorations or attending the game to cheer on the Tigers, Homecoming in Columbia gets everyone hyped up on school spirit.
Homecoming at Mark Twain has been no different. With the Homecoming Committee congregating in the lobby for hours, several times a week, for the last few weeks, the decorations have slowly come to life.
There are four levels of competition when it comes to Homecoming decorations. At the highest level, called Tradition, fraternities and sororities compete. Below that, where Mark Twain Residence Hall is competing, along with College Avenue and Hatch, is Truman, then Columns and finally Black and Gold.
Each residence hall or organization chooses what level they want to compete in, a decision that falls onto the hall government. This decision is dependent on how much time and effort residents are willing to commit to helping. Mark Twain Hall decided it wanted to participate in the Truman level this year.
The first task was to create a poster for outside the hall. After being assigned the theme of Tiger Stripe ice cream, the residents got to work. Zoe Rich, president of Mark Twain Residence Hall, contributed to making the poster.
The Mark Twain banner depicts Truman the Tiger eating Tiger Stripe ice cream “looking all happy about Homecoming” and the University of Idaho mascot, Joe Vandal, holding a potato, “looking all sad and mad in the corner,” Rich said. The planning started weeks ago.
“[The Homecoming committee] had a design meeting,” Rich said. “At the meeting, everyone brought their original ideas and we kind just combined them together to create the final poster idea.”
As if making one poster wasn’t challenging or time-consuming enough, an identical poster was made for the Honors College. Since Mark Twain is considered the honors dormitory, the two teamed up this year for all of Homecoming.
The designing didn’t just stop at the poster.
The school also helps decorate downtown. The goal is to involve the whole community in Homecoming and make the whole town festive. Maddy Crozier, a freshman, is the co-leader of the Homecoming Committee and has put almost 50 hours of her time into Homecoming preparations.
“We decorate the district,” Crozier said. “[Every residence hall, fraternity, sorority, or organization] is assigned a business downtown to decorate. Our business is Yellow Dog Book Shop.”
The final part of preparing for homecoming is the parade.
“We will have a Mark Twain float in the parade,” Rich said. “We’re going to be handing out Scholastic books provided by the Honors College to kids, we’re decorating a truck to look like an ice cream cone, we’re making ice cream cone costumes for people to wear while they hand out books and we might have someone dress up like Samuel Clemens.”
All of these decorations have required hours of work. Freshman Mallorie Mason, though not involved in student government or the Homecoming committee, has pitched in when she can.
“I live on Maddy’s floor and they [have been in] need of additional help,” Mason said. “I’m not doing anything and painting is fun. I wanted to get involved in Homecoming, so I decided that I would just come and help.”
This year, Mark Twain Residence Hall choose to compete in a higher level of competition, with the hopes of being a true competitor. Mark Twain ended up winning fourth place in the homecoming competition.
Edited by Claire Colby | email@example.com