Homecoming-does it have a purpose?

Blue Jay Fan

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We had our Homecoming last weekend. It's still a big deal. The band and cheerleaders march from the school to the stadium, 12-13 blocks. Queen and court ride in convertibles behind the band. Nice pregame festivities including crowning the queen. For some people it's the only game they attend all year. And a big plus this year, my former neighbor was the Homecoming queen!


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Mogadore Alumni Foundation sponsors their Distinguished Alumni and homecoming tailgate activities to encourage Alumni to return on homecoming night. Class reunions are held and the Alumni Foundation furnishes the food. Great crowds!


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It works for those interested. I've not been back to mine since the year after graduation, but I know many who do go regularly. If you don't want to go, don't. I do know my HS has the usual game, dance, parade, etc. but there are also alumni and athletic HoF inductions that same weekend. My hat goes off to the organizers who do all of the things. I saw the pics on social media and it looked like a lot went into this. My principal from back in the day was inducted, and that was nice to see.

It is certainly community-by-community if not school-by-school. Many graduate and move on, others stay. I will say though, as each generation passes the notion of the high school being a vestige like it used to be is fading. Through the 80s where at a large scale (not every little burg but many) college was not the norm for a bulk of the population, many retained a strong bond to their HS as the last formal experience. With college becoming more mainstream in the 90s and into the 2000s, (again, not all places but many) I think many use their college as that bastion. Personally, I've been to my college's homecoming every couple of years and keep in regular touch with those friends more so than high school.

Point being - no one is forcing you to go. I did attend the local school's game this past weekend to evaluate the officiating crew and it was nice to see a big crowd, many alumni, and the recognition they do. It was also a close game so I am sure the crowd liked that. But it's not everyone's cup of tea.


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I just looked at my HS yearbook about a reverse homecoming we called "Coming Home." It was held in mid-February. Even though I didn't get involved, Student Council thought it was a great way to break the winter blahs.
So, this a great event for the kids and the games are just an added attraction.

The Dock

Well-known member
Maybe I missed it in an earlier post, but 30 posts in and not a mention of homecoming proposals.
The social media landscape with today’s teenagers has changed dramatically, compared to what was ‘in’ 5-10 years ago. Early 2010’s, everything was on Facebook. Kids would post anything under the sun and the audience (the “friends-sphere”) would engage. Excitement over who gets asked/how they get asked, and promoting the “homecoming proposals” was a cultural staple then.

The youth seldom use Facebook anymore. It’s a dinosaur platform in their eyes. Adding distant relatives and adults they have very, how do I say, barely any familial/social relationship with? Kids want their space. So FB went dead and kids gravitated to social media that are more photo-based and less conducive to “everything has to be posted and explained.” Media like Instagram and, especially with upper-middle class kids, VSCO, cater more to their expressive and sentimental tendencies.

“Promposals” are still a big thing. HoCo publicity has kinda gone by the wayside since kids view it as ‘lesser than’ prom. Plus, homecoming is for all high school students. The dances generally have less restrictive attendance criteria than prom.

The Dock

Well-known member
I went to Howard University’s homecoming years ago. Man, lemme tell ya, that was one of the best events I’ve been to. Shaq was randomly there, it was way off the chain.
I read that east coast HBCU homecomings were the place to be in the 90’s and 2000’s. @DragonflyJonez and his followers would talk about OutKast, ATCQ, Wyclef and the Fugees performing at A&T, Spellman etc


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Do alumni "come home" for the high school homecoming game like they might for college? That part, or at least the attempt, seems borrowed from college but not followed through.

For the students, there's a popularity contest and a dance. Let the kids have their fun.
Not really. That’s more popular in college


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As a fan. I hate home coming games. Pre game always goes over, and a longer half time. For the kids? Absolutely there should always be a homecoming. We're getting away from too many traditions as a society.


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Neither Ursuline nor Mooney have ever had "homecoming" games. Their rivalry was always homecoming enough with lots of alumni returning for the annual slug fest. Back in the '60s and '70s, as I recall, Ursuline was often homecoming for Campbell Memorial, Hubbard, Austintown Fitch, Rayen, East, etc.---all feeder areas to the school when the Mahoning was the boundary with CMHS. It seemed we were big rivals for our feeder areas who had neighborhood kids both at their district schools and at UHS. I remember sitting thru loooong halftime shows. Campbell would go so far as to have Orthodox priests on their sidelines to try to counter balance the Catholic priests on the Irish sidelines. It would be considered unconstitutional today but that was Youngstown. A very different place back then.


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Parkway has a basketball and a football Homecoming. Seems like they pick the Fort Recovery game for both if they are playing them at home. Probably thinking they can win that game. (Havent won too many......)


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Always thought it was odd that spouses let their spouses attend homecomings/reunions alone???
Probably looking to relive some memories that don’t include their spouses

cue the music...



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(Canton McKinley) from 1973 to 2006 I never missed one, and I moved from
Canton to Grove City in 1987.




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The more recent alums seem to have a great time. More tatted up and the women trying to cram into the same dresses they wore senior year. It's a good tradition. Helps the sense of continuity.


Well-known member
Yep, one of the primary purposes is the encouragement of teenage males to make extremely awkward approaches to teenage females.
Homecoming 101
Homecoming is a time to celebrate shared experiences, when alumni from high schools and colleges return to their alma maters from around the world to reconnect with people, places and traditions. More than just a football game, the modern homecoming has evolved into a week of celebrations ranging from tailgate parties and bonfires to formal dances and the coronation of a homecoming court.

The First Homecoming
The NCAA credits the University of Missouri with the first homecoming event. In 1911 Mizzou's Athletic Director Chester Brewer invited alumni to "come home" for the annual game against the University of Kansas. The event drew over 10,000 alumni and fans for a weekend of speeches, rallies, dances and a parade, with the big game as the weekend's center point.

Football Takes Center Stage
As the popularity of football grew on campuses across the U.S., several schools hit on the idea to hold a large-scale celebration to bolster school spirit and connect current students with alumni. Often times the coronation of a new football field or a big rival game was highlighted to focus homecoming celebrations.

History Takes its Toll
The University of Illinois claims to have the longest running homecoming tradition, starting in 1910 and only skipping one year--1918 when the influenza epidemic kept people from gathering in large numbers.

Crowning of the Queen
The homecoming court has its origins in the 1930s. Originally chosen based on a composite of the float she was riding and the person herself, later queens and kings were nominated and ultimately chosen based on their qualities as an individual.

Fire Rediscovered
One of the earliest instances of the homecoming bonfire was on the campus of Baylor University in 1909. Freshmen maintained overnight fires to safeguard the Baylor campus against raids from cross-town rival Texas Christian University.

Mums the Word
Mums are short for chrysanthemums--the fall flower largely associated with homecoming. The exchanging of mums has evolved in the southwestern U.S. into corsages and garters exchanged by high school students. As long as three feet and weighing up to 12 pounds, mums are elaborately decorated with chrysanthemum blossoms, ribbons, bells and trinkets denoting name, class and special interests.

Party in the Parking Lot
The tailgate party has emerged as the pre-eminent event for homecoming week celebrations. Alumni, students and fans will travel from all over the world to attend the festivities taking place in the parking lot outside of a stadium. Many tailgaters don't even have tickets for the game--they're just there for the party.

Everyone Loves a Parade
The modern homecoming parade includes the school's marching band, the homecoming court, a variety of floats based upon a chosen theme and a leader of the parade--usually the school's grand marshal. Parades may take place on the school campus or run the length of a town's main street, inviting the majority of the town's citizens and businesses to take part.

Catch the Spirit
Spirit days or dress-up days are most popular during high school homecoming week. Different themes designated throughout the week invite students to dress in costumes or school colors to show their school spirit. Common themes include toga day, geek week and school spirit day.


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I read that east coast HBCU homecomings were the place to be in the 90’s and 2000’s. @DragonflyJonez and his followers would talk about OutKast, ATCQ, Wyclef and the Fugees performing at A&T, Spellman etc
It was insane. Apparently, a football game was played in all that madness. I remember puking in the metro subway and ending up at some diner that had some bomb fried chicken. I don’t know how the heck I made it back across the patomac to my hotel.