Student organizations prepare for Hobo Day

The Hobo Day Committee isn’t the only student organization counting down the days until Hobo Day. Student organizations across campus are preparing for Hobo Day, the parade and events throughout the week.  

One group preparing for Hobo Week is the University Program Council. Brittney McClendon, the UPC entertainment coordinator, organizes Cavorts and Miss Homelycoming. She said both are a lot of work bridging them together and keeping each event organized.

  “When I’m not thinking about school, I’m thinking about these events,” McClendon said. “I want them to be big. I want them to be great. I want them to be better than the last.”

 McClendon started working on the ground plan for Miss Homelycoming more than a month ago and the ground plan for Cavorts about a week ago. She said she puts more emphasis on putting Miss Homelycoming together because Cavorts is focused on talent and it is a “you go on, you play, you go off” type of event. Whereas Miss Homelycoming is a “completely different ball game.”

 McClendon is planning to change the Miss Homelycoming event into a more Pageant-esque event, similar to the Miss America Pageant. The changes include a synchronized group dance and platforms to stand on. She also said the show will end with a bang this year.

 “[Students should attend the events] because they’re a tradition and it really gives a sense of community and being able to come together because we sell out these events—that’s 1,000 people in one place—and you get to meet new people and get to go with your friends and experience new things,” McClendon said.

 In addition to the events UPC hosts throughout Hobo Week, the organization also helps with parade security to ensure bystanders don’t rush the street in their enthusiasm over the decorated floats. This year’s parade will feature 157 student organizations with floats.

 The Academy of Student Pharmacists is one student organization that has made participation in the float parade an annual event. Kelsie Wahl, a second year pharmacy student and co-chair for the ASP special events committee, said the float is an opportunity for students in the organization and other pharmacy organizations Kappa Psi and Kappa Epsilon to connect.

 “It’s fun to just get to know other people and also go out and like represent the college and your profession at the same time, which are two things you’re passionate about and it’s just cool to incorporate both,” Wahl said.

 The float’s theme this year is “Around the World in 80 days” to match the Hobo Day theme, “It’s Always an Adventure.” Wahl started planning the float this summer with the other co-chair for the committee for the outline of what the float will be and its budget.

 Some organizations don’t start preparations until closer to when Hobo Day is. The geography club started working on its float last week, but its president, Garth Wadsworth, is excited about how it will turn out.

 The plan is to create a volcano on the float and use a bucket of dry ice and some water with a pipe coming to the top to imitate smoke rising from the volcano.

 “We have a small but mighty crew of four working on the volcano,” Wadsworth, a senior geography major, said.

 The student organization to lead all 157 organizations through the parade is The Pride of the Dakotas, which must prepare for Hobo Day events as well. Although The Pride won’t be changing much from its normal halftime show, pre-game performance and music selection, it still prepares for the celebration and members are proud to represent SDSU in the Hobo Day parade.

“We as a band are very proud to represent this university and proud to perform for students and alumni and friends alike and we’re excited to be apart of this culture and university which we’re all very proud of,” said Kevin Kessler, the director of athletic bands.

 Kessler said the band is a visual representation of the spirit of SDSU and a boosting organization for the university.

 “We have to be in that parade because of what we represent, and what we represent are all the good things this university provides and stands for,” Kessler said. “I feel very strongly about that, about our place in the university culture and what we do to advertise and advocate for the university.”

 In addition to the football game and the parade, The Pride plans to play a short concert for President David Chicoine and his guests before the parade.

 Kessler said some of the biggest challenges in preparing for Hobo Day is the “South Dakota Octobers” and keeping students focused during the week.

 “There’s a lot of activity around Hobo Week, and I love that—I’m an alumnus and I remember that I lived for Hobo Week, but it can also be somewhat distracting and so just keeping everybody focused and everybody on task during that week is somewhat challenging because they’re really busy and I understand that.”

 The days are counting down, and all that remains is 17 more days until Hobo Day. All hands are on deck for student organizations preparing for the celebration.