UT’s 101st Homecoming Week kicks off Sunday

On Sunday, “Homecoming 101: Intro to Rocky Top” events will begin and continue throughout the week, leading up to the Homecoming parade from Circle Park to the Strip on Friday and the football game against the Golden Eagles of Southern Mississippi on Saturday.

For the first time in 30 years, the Homecoming parade is returning to Cumberland Ave.

Nate Hogan, president of the Student Homecoming Committee, says that the city of Knoxville asked for the parade route to be moved to the Strip to promote more local involvement.

“It will be nice to see the integration with the Knoxville community,” he said.

The Student Homecoming Committee is one of the many campus organizations that worked to plan various events.

According to Hogan, they began preparing for the events in March, and the University Homecoming Committee began planning this year’s Homecoming as soon as the last one ended.

There are 46 individual events taking place all over campus over the span of next week. One of which is the Slime Trivia, which Hogan is particularly looking forward to.

“[The] Slime Trivia, which happens on Wednesday, is going to be where contestants will be asked trivia questions about random topics, some even UT related,” he continues, “and if they get it wrong, they get slimed!”

There will be other events throughout the week for students who do not want to get messy. On Monday, the Black Cultural Programming Committee will host the Homecoming Comedy Show, the Homecoming Fashion Show, which is hosted by People of Style and Education, will take place on Thursday and there will be number of tailgating events on game day. A full list of these events can be found on the Homecoming events page.

The parade on Friday will feature fierce float-creating competition between a number of student organizations, as well as the Little Vol Walk for children under 10-years-old to ride along in the parade and then head to Little Vols at the Ballpark afterwards. Leading the parade will be Del and Dane Bryant. Their parents were the acclaimed songwriters Boudleaux and Felice Bryant, who penned “Rocky Top”.

Due to the parade float line-up at 3 p.m., two lanes of Lake Loudoun Blvd will be closed for an hour. Shortly after that, Volunteer Blvd from Lake Loudoun Blvd to Cumberland Ave will be closed from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Cumberland Ave will be closed from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. for the parade and post-parade celebration.

For more information check out the University of Tennessee Homecoming page.

Featured image by Jenna Beaudin

Edited by Taylor Owens

Advocates for Autism to host Fall Fest

On Friday from 4-8 p.m., Advocates for Autism, a campus organization dedicated to spreading awareness and educating students about autism and individuals on the spectrum, will be celebrating the arrival of autumn with a number of activities at the Humanities Amphitheater on Volunteer Blvd.

Advocates for Autism was founded last year by the current co-presidents Brianna Mason and Terrell Broady Jr. Both are graduate students pursuing their MBAs.

Image may contain: textTheir mission statement reads:

Advocates For Autism aims to raise awareness and educate the campus about autism and individuals on the spectrum. We provide an inclusive environment for students on the spectrum and serve as allies. Advocates For Autism raises funds to provide local students, families, and adults with resources, support, and education.”

From 4-6 p.m., the local Friendly Farm will be provide a petting farm, which will include goats, pigs, sheep and ducks among other animals.

Ron Schneider will lead the attendants in square dancing starting at 5 p.m.

There will be pumpkin decorating, a photo booth, a bake sale themed around fall, apple cider and s’mores throughout the event.

All proceeds from the bake sale, s’mores and any food sold for the animals will go towards their community partner, Autism Site Knoxville, and other fundraising events.

Co-president Mason said this event is going to be a fun way to celebrate the fall season and learn more about autism. 

We hope to have families and individuals with autism at the event to interact with one another and participate in fun activities,” she said. “We also hope to raise awareness about autism because with 1 in 68 children born this year expected to receive a diagnosis on the autism spectrum, the population is growing. It is growing more and more common that you will in someway be affected by autism. It is our job to make people aware and educate.”

For more information about becoming a member of Advocates for Autism, email Mason at bmason10@vols.utk.edu

For more information on AFA events by liking their Facebook page

Edited by Vanessa Rodriguez 

Featured Image by Randall Billings, courtesy of Creative Commons

UT professors to debut Pat Summitt film

On Thursday at 6 p.m., the Bijou Theatre in downtown Knoxville will roll out the orange carpet as fans and supporters of the Lady Vols pour in to see “Pat: A Legacy of Love” publicly for the first time.

This documentary, created by University of Tennessee professors Sarah Hillyer and Ashleigh Huffman, tells the compelling story of Pat Summitt’s role in providing basketballs and other sporting equipment to girls in Iraq. Summit’s generosity and compassion has allowed young Iraqi women to play sports, something that many girls in the Middle East do not have the opportunity to do.

The greatest gift we have received from Pat is her kindness – this night gives us a chance to return the gift and say ‘thank you’ for changing the lives of girls in Iraq through the gift of sending basketballs and messages of love and hope,” Hillyer said.

A portion of the profits from this event will go to the Pat Summitt Foundation as well as the effort to bring sports to girls worldwide. There will be various ways to give to these causes throughout the night, among them being sponsoring basketballs to be donated both locally and internationally and purchasing “I am her Legacy” t-shirts.

You may see quite a few familiar faces at this event, such as Lady Vols head coach Holly Warlick.

Warlick said the project has changed her, and she believes the sport is a way to empower women and promote peace. 

Also in attendance will be Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame president Dana Hart, former athletic director Joan Cronan and co-hosts of the event: Robin Wilhoit from WBIR and Michelle Marciniak, former Lady Vol and Sheex co-founder.

This night also boasts a performance from the Seymour AAU Lady Ballerz and will be filled with surprises.

For more information, visit the film’s website.

Featured Image by: Phil Ellsworth / ESPN

Edited by: Kaitlin Flippo