This year, ACBU made some big changes to Homecoming Week. Overall, we see most of them as beneficial to students, faculty and alumni.
First of all, the Lighting of the “B” is no longer Monday night as a kickoff event. It’s now been moved from the beginning of the week to Friday, the day before the homecoming soccer game.
We see this change as positive, as more alumni can travel during the weekend to see it in person.
In the past, some students complained that the Lighting of the “B” on Monday confilicted with classes scheduled in the evening. Fewer classes meet on Friday nights, allowing more students to attend the event.
Instead of the “B” kicking things off, ACBU introduced a “Live! On Main” comedian event on Monday in the Renaissance Coliseum.
While this was a great entertainment idea, it doesn’t necessarily promote homecoming or Bradley spirit. It just feels like we need a stronger event to replace something as spirited as the Lighting of the “B.”
ACBU also brought back the parade for the first time since 2003, and it will take place Saturday before the homecoming game.
The parade route begins in front of the student center and ends on the intersection near Markin Family Student Recreation Center.
While it’s convenient for students, we wonder if it should have been located downtown or somewhere else in the local area. Placing it within Peoria could allow more groups to participate and provide a Bradley presence within the city.
Regardless, 49 groups have signed up for the parade, according to ACBU coordinators. This is a pretty significant amount, and we hope to see it succeed tomorrow and provide another major source of school pride.