Homecoming 2021 comes to a close


Kohichiro Yamada

Early Rider: Dr. Farley leads the homecoming parade. Homecoming weekend ended with a parade before the tailgating festivities and the football game on Oct. 30, 2021.

Washburn campus was full of life and excitement the week of Homecoming. Students fully embraced the theme of the roaring twenties, which historically was a time of rebirth, growth and prosperity. From Monday, Oct. 25 to Saturday, Oct. 30, organizations were in full swing of school spirit.
Monday kicked off the homecoming week with a top hat judging at 5 p.m. and the announcement of the Ichabods of Honor at the Homecoming Bash that lasted from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. in the A/B room in the Memorial Union. Student organizations had spent hours and even days decorating their top hat for the contest. The winners for most creative top hats were Kappa Sigma, Biology Club and the Office of Student Involvement and Development. While the organizations with top hats that best reflected the 20’s theme were Delta Gamma, God’s Bods and Financial Aid.
The Ichabods of Honor are students that are nominated for their work and achievements by teachers and student organizations they are a part of. To narrow down the nominees, each student was put through an interview process. The final nominees chosen were Leah Jamison, Okashwi Rana, Kevin Conner, Kathrine Cook, Wyatt Carter, Emilio Chavez, Jarron Caffrey, Shayden Hanes, Tierney Kester, Sophia Frick and Charles Dilliehunt III.
Tuesday was the judging of office decorations and banners in the afternoon, followed by open Mic night at 7 p.m. The audience couldn’t get enough of the talent that was brought to the stage. In the end, Michelle Sawyer from Black Student Union came in first, Jack Benedict from Kappa Sigma came in second and Mia and Payton from Alpha Phi came in third.
Wednesday was a day filled with jazz and great food in the Memorial Union for the annual Scorch on the Porch event. From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. students got to enjoy jazz music courtesy of Baby J while admiring the decorated top hats from each student organization. Students were also treated to Chicago-style pizza, cheesecake and lemonade that was served. The day concluded with Chapter & Residence Hall Door Decoration judging at 3 p.m.
While there was only one event Thursday, it was certainly one of the most anticipated events. At 7 p.m. in Lee Arena student organizations showed off their dance skills for Yell Like Hell. The Washburn Dancing Blues set the tone for the rest of the evening with their contagious energy. During the transition to the next performance, Abby Trautman and Dylan Babcock, the hosts of the evening, introduced and questioned the Bods of Honor. Next up was the Washburn Cheer team, who warmed up the crowd with school spirit before the seven organizations competed against one another for first, second and third place. While they may not have been professionals, the student organization dances stole the show.
Black Student Union earned a well deserved first place in the competition. Fraternities and sororities, who were judged separately, also received awards, with Delta Gamma and Kappa Sigma in first, Zeta Tau Alpha, Alpha Delta and Phi Delta Theta in second, and Alpha Phi and Sigma Phi Epsilon in third. Dylan Babcock, vice president of WSGA, was left to dance with other WSGA members to entertain the crowd while the judges deliberated.
“Dancing for me, it was really fun to do with all the people here in WSGA that were all a part of it. I really enjoyed it,” Babcock said. “Yeah, it’s not in my comfort zone, but I enjoy being able to get time with everyone and it seemed like the crowd enjoyed it. Overall, the event went well.”
Homecoming week concluded on Saturday with the Homecoming parade, tailgate and the long-awaited football game against Northeastern State University. Participants arrived early to prepare their floats for the judges and crowd of onlookers. The students and staff put all their efforts into the creative floats as a presentation of their organization. Crowd members couldn’t help but lean into the liveliness of the parade. In the end, the judges announced that Delta Gamma and Kappa Sigma were the grand champions with their floats.
After the parade, people flocked to the tailgate on the lawn to mingle, eat and drink and hype themselves up for the football kickoff at 1 p.m.
“I really liked it. It was a much bigger turn out that we’ve seen at some of our previous tailgates and games throughout the semester. It really seemed like a lot more of our alumni and families and people in the community showed up for it, for homecoming,” Ariel Smith, special events director for WSGA said. “Homecoming isn’t just about the students, it’s about our alumni, our staff and the Topeka community, and it really seemed like everyone came together like a family.
The grand Finale of Homecoming came during halftime of the game with the announcement of Top Bod. After a week full of activities, performances and hard work from all who participated, it was announced that Charles Dilliehunt III and Shayden Hanes were chosen to be Top Bods.
After the halftime festivities, Washburn football topped off the week by defeating the Riverhawks 35-0, moving to 7-2 on the year. While it is undeniable that Washburn football has been at it’s best because of the hard work of the players and coaches, the momentum of the spirit filled week and the support from the fans certainly didn’t hurt.

Edited by: Kyle Manthe, Katrina Johnson