Grand Pooba Anna Chicoine: carries on Hobo Day tradition


GARRETT AMMESMAKI Grand Pooba Anna Chicoine speaks Oct. 9 at the Rally at the Rails celebration for Hobo Day 2017.

Ben Hummel

As students geared up for Hobo Day, Grand Pooba Anna Chicoine oversaw preparation of the week’s events.

Despite the senior English major’s busy schedule, she still finds time to fulfill the responsibilities of grand pooba, including overseeing the Hobo Day Committee.

“I mostly deal with the big picture of everything,” Chicoine said. “Another big thing is the budget; I try and make sure that we don’t overspend hugely, and that we stay on task.”

Chicoine has three assistant poobas for events, marketing and the parade. The assistant poobas have coordinators who report back to them, which “streamlines information.”

The title of grand pooba was started in the 1970s, and the time honored tradition is important to Chicoine.

“A big part of it is being able to make sure that everybody has the best Hobo Day that they can, including all the coordinators on the committee,” Chicoine said. “That’s probably my favorite part; making sure that everyone has that great experience.”

In addition to the committee, Chicoine has her brother and former Grand Pooba Corey Chicoine as a reference.

“It’s really nice having Corey as a resource, since I know I can go to him with a question,” Anna said. Corey was on the Hobo Day Committee for three years before becoming grand pooba.

It was Corey who chose Anna for his replacement as grand pooba. Anna’s attention to detail is what ultimately won him over.

“Anna will definitely bring a lot more organization to the position than I did,” Corey said. “Anna and I have a lot of similarities, and we pretty much excel in all the same things, and she’s also really good at the stuff I’m bad at.”

Corey is known for starting the bumbassador program, but said the success of the program depends on each new grand pooba.

“It’s all about envisioning the legacy. You can do something one year, but it is going to take the grand pooba and the rest of the committees [of the following years] to really get that to take, which they have been doing really well,” he said. “She’s really going to help get more people involved, spread more awareness, and let people know what Hobo Day is really about.”