Comet Pride in High Profile for Homecoming 2011
New Rock Climbing Wall Highlights List of Attractions for Celebration

Comet pride has been on full display this week, as homecoming festivities kicked off Wednesday at UT Dallas.

There has been a lot to get orange and green about as the university marked its 18th homecoming celebration, which has packed a wide range of activities into four spirited days.

Car painting, car smashing, a poetry circus, late night float building, cardboard boat races, a parade and a ball and coronation — all part of the festivities. And of course, spectator sports with men’s and women’s basketball.

New additions have generated buzz, including the university’s first rock climbing wall, which debuted this week, and an evening 5K run.

“We began planning for homecoming in the summer, but things really started to pick up in September,” said Kecia Baker, assistant dean of students at the University. “We don’t have a theme this year — it’s all about Comet spirit.”

Get Your Green Groove On

Each year the Student Union Activities Advisory Board puts on the “Green, Orange and White Ball and Coronation. The color theme this year is green, and all students are encouraged to don their favorite green party attire.

Baker said 47 floats registered for the parade, nearly 90 students signed up for the run, and anywhere from 300 to 500 were expected at the spirit rally and picnic.  A reception for returning alumni was also part of the schedule.

Recreational Sports also hosted a late-night “silent disco” party for the grand opening of the new climbing wall, which is 25 feet high by 40 feet wide  The new permanent campus feature is located in the Auxiliary Gym in the Activity Center.

“We just started a rock climbing club this spring, and now we have a wall,” said Brian Antheunisse, a sophomore electrical engineering major who is internationally ranked in the sport.  “I think that makes us one of the best clubs on campus.”

During the basketball games there will be a “white out.” Students will get white hand towels and a special T-shirt before each game.

The homecoming planning committee included six students and staff members from various offices across campus. Baker said UT Dallas students have put a lot of effort into this year’s celebration.

“I look at homecoming as something that builds spirit and pride among our students, faculty and staff,” she said. “I think these are the kinds of celebrations that create memories for students while they are at the University, and that will ultimately make our students more engaged and involved.”

Capture the Shot: Photo Contest

Enter your best homecoming pictures in a feature photo contest.

Students are encouraged to shoot photos throughout the week and submit their favorites to [email protected] by midnight Tuesday, Nov. 22. First, second and third place prizes will be awarded to the images that best capture the spirit of homecoming 2011.

Winners will be announced Monday, Nov. 28, and prizes include a $200 gift card from the UT Dallas Bookstore for first place, a $100 gift card for second place and a $50 gift card for third. The top entries could also be featured on the homecoming website, on the University homepage or University marketing materials.



Activity Highlights

Homecoming 2011 continues. Saturday’s activities include:

Alumni breakfast Men’s and women’s basketball games Orange, Green and White Ball, including homecoming queen and king coronations.

Details of these events and the complete homecoming 2011 schedule are available online.

Media Contact: The Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, [email protected].