July 15, 2024

Students, alumni kick off Homecoming week with dyeing popular fountain orange

The University of Tennessee kicked off Homecoming week with the annual dyeing of the Europa and the Bull fountain.

The Vols aren’t the only ones who bleed orange, The University of Tennessee’s Europa and the Bull fountain does too.

The Student Alumni Associates partnered with the Homecoming Committee on Oct. 29 at 2 p.m. to host the annual dyeing of the Europa and the Bull fountain located at the McClung Tower Plaza.

This event has been a tradition to kick off Homecoming week every year for the last 10 years. Susie Orr, the director of the Alumni Affairs in 2010, brought this tradition to campus. The annual St. Patrick’s Day celebration in Chicago where the Chicago river is dyed green every year inspired Orr.

The Student Alumni Associates gave each student who attended a small cup of orange food coloring diluted in water. The fountain rapidly turned orange once students and alumni emptied their cups into the water.

The statue inside the fountain on campus is a replica that was erected at the university back in 1968. Carl Milles sculpted the original Europa and the Bull statue located in Sweden in 1924.

“Tradition is very important here at the University of Tennessee,” Director of Special Events and Public Relations of Alumni Affairs Mallory Mendence said. “This event is one that both current students and alumni look forward to experiencing every year while also getting the chance to experience other traditions here.”

The first Homecoming week at UT is connected to the 1916 Tennessee vs. Vanderbilt football game. Three hundred UT alumni were present at that Homecoming event and football game. The alumni exhibited the different graduating classes dating back to 1872.

Homecoming at UT did not become a tradition until 1925 after World War I concluded.

“Homecoming week is an especially exciting week on campus because we get to hone in on what our values are here at the University of Tennessee,” senior and Student Alumni Associate Elizabeth Longmire said.

More information about the events for Homecoming week at UT can be found on TNJN.com.


Featured image by Ciera Noa

Edited by Vanessa Rodriguez