In recent years, the Student Recreation Complex decorated and hosted alumni-centered events to welcome back MU graduates.
MizzouRec puts on the Team Mizzou Alumni Reunion, which invites Team Mizzou Alumni to come back and enjoy the Homecoming festivities. The reunion is in its eighth year and will take place this Saturday from 7 to 9 a.m.
Emily McElwain, associate director of MizzouRec Services & Facilities, explained MizzouRec’s involvement with Homecoming in recent years of the celebration in an email.
Q: What is MizzouRec’s history with homecoming?
A: Rothwell Gymnasium, the oldest part of the MizzouRec complex, was the first gym on campus to house the Tigers. In 1911, then-Athletic Director Chester Brewer urged alumni to come home to Mizzou to cheer on their Mizzou Tigers football team [as they] take on the University of Kansas. This would be the birth of the tradition of Homecoming. Rothwell, and eventually Brewer Fieldhouse, were not only athletic facilities but were home to many dances, breakfasts and other events during years of Homecoming celebrations at Mizzou.
Q: What are some traditions that MizzouRec does to celebrate Homecoming?
A: From 1998-2008 MizzouRec hosted an annual breakfast before the Homecoming parade similar to ones held years before when Rothwell and Brewer were home to athletics. In 2009, Team Mizzou began hosting a private event specifically for graduates of the student staff development program.
Since 2011, the 100th anniversary of Homecoming, MizzouRec flies a special Homecoming flag atop Brewer Fieldhouse and decorates Rothwell in banners of black and gold.
Q: How can students get involved in Homecoming through MizzouRec?
A: Be sure to stop by and take photos with the larger-than-life Chester Brewer [cutout], who makes his way out front of Rothwell the week of Homecoming!
A: Describe the vibe of MizzouRec during homecoming.
A: Celebratory! It's great to have Mizzou Tigers come and visit our spaces … Those who graduated long before our 2003-2005 renovation & expansion can still see glimpses of what the Rec used to be like through Touch Tiger History points and our history gallery in Rothwell’s lobby. And those who have graduated in the years since the 2003-2005 project can experience our newer changes like zouLIFE, Clark’s [Boxing Gym] and Stalcup's [Garage.]
Q: What is your favorite part of Mizzou Homecoming?
A: Seeing all the familiar faces of years past! I love when our Tigers come home to visit.
This interview has been edited for clarity.
Edited by Brooke Collier | firstname.lastname@example.org