Six must-see homecoming events
Since 1920, homecoming has been a yearly tradition for the Penn State community. While Penn Staters don’t need an excuse to come back to campus, Homecoming serves as the perfect opportunity to bring alumni and fans of all ages together to celebrate dear old State.
This year’s Homecoming festivities will kick off on Sunday, October 7 with a free concert sponsored by the Student Programming Association and will culminate when the Nittany Lions take the field against Michigan State on Saturday, October 13.
Being one of the largest student-run Homecomings in the country, it is no surprise Penn State Homecoming week is filled with events and activities designed to celebrate our beloved blue and white. If you find yourself heading to Happy Valley for this year’s Homecoming, you definitely won’t want to miss these events.
Allen Street Jam
From 2–8 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 8, Allen Street in Downtown State College will transform into a mini festival full of food trucks, games and performances. The Allen Street Jam is also home to the Homecoming Dance Competition, where Penn State dance organizations gather to compete and show their Penn State pride.
Past to Present
Tuesday, October 9 is a day dedicated to sharing the rich history of Penn State. Head to the HUB for an afternoon full of food, interactive activities and performances. The event will also feature a Penn State Museum, showcasing the largest documented collection of Penn State memorabilia.
Best of Penn State Carnival
If you find yourself in Happy Valley on Wednesday, October 10, be sure to check out the Best of Penn State Carnival on the HUB lawn. From 2–7 p.m., the lawn will transform into Penn State’s own personal carnival, complete with games, food, face painting and more.
Student-Alumni Ice Cream Social
The ice cream social, held on Friday, October 12, is a chance for students, alumni and community members alike to enjoy Berkey Creamery ice cream and socialize with one another. Designed to welcome alumni back to Happy Valley for the weekend, guests will have the chance to win festive prizes. From 1–3 p.m., the Hintz Alumni Center will host performances by student groups and the alumni Blue Band.
The annual parade will officially begin at 6 p.m. on Friday, October 12 in front of the IM building on campus. From there, the parade will stroll through campus and along College Avenue. Spectators are welcome to line the parade route and marvel at the various floats and share in the excitement of the evening.
This year’s Grand Marshal, Lisa Salters, will also drive through the parade route. Salters, who graduated from Penn State in 1988, played for the Lady Lions basketball team and is now a sportscaster for ESPN. Along with the Grand Marshal, the Honorary Grand Marshal, members of this year’s Homecoming Court, students, alumni and community members will participate in the parade.
Of course, Homecoming wouldn’t be complete with a football game. This year’s homecoming match-up will kick off at 3:30 p.m. against Michigan State. Halftime will also feature a performance by both current members and alumni of the Blue Band.
Homecoming in Happy Valley is always an exciting time. Whether you are able to participate in the events all week or only a few, Homecoming is a chance to celebrate what is means to be a Penn Stater. How will you be spending Homecoming this year?