INSTITUTE, W.Va. — It’s that time of year again for college homecomings to start getting underway across the board, and a local campus within the Charleston community is celebrating its very own this weekend.
Annual homecoming activities kicked off at West Virginia State University Thursday with the coronation ceremony of its homecoming king and queen, among other events to get the occasion started.
WVSU President Ericke Cage discussed the rest of what’s to come throughout the weekend on WCHS Radio’s 580 LIVE Friday. He said they’ve become particularly known for doing their homecoming celebrations up right.
“Look, what makes us so special here at West Virginia State University is that when you come and become part of the WVSU community, you become a part of a family, and we really take great pride in that,” Cage said.
An ROTC Hall of Fame induction ceremony was expected to take place during the day Friday on the campus. The university’s ROTC Hall of Fame was established in 1980 to recognize the achievements of its graduates excelling in their fields of study.
This year recognized retired U.S Army Major Kimberly Stevenson, who graduated with a bachelor’s degree in business administration from WVSU in 1988 before going on to achieve many accomplishments throughout her over 21 years of military service.
This was to be followed by the Greek Unity cookout and an alumni dinner.
However, Cage said Saturday is the big day of celebrating. Activities get underway Saturday with a the homecoming parade starting at noon on the WVSU campus, in which Cage said the whole community is invited to attend.
Following the parade is the football game starting at 6 p.m. against Glenville State University. A fireworks display is set to take place immediately after the game.
Cage said throughout the day Saturday the university will also be host to a Family Fun Zone at the campus along Earl Loyd Way. It’s free and open to the public, and it will feature games and activities for kids of all ages and food from local vendors.
Cage said the homecoming events only emphasize WVSU’s significance and the impact it has on all of those who have attended throughout the years its been a part of the community.
“We are a small community where everybody knows your name, and I just marvel when I talk to our alumni when they come on campus, because they have so many fond memories that took place on this campus, and those memories are deeply embedded in our history, in our heritage,” Cage said.
West Virginia Route 25, or Fairlawn Avenue, will be closed at approximately 11:50 a.m. Saturday for 45 to 60 minutes for the parade. It will be closed from the traffic light at King Street at nearby Shawnee Park to the Interstate 64 interchange at Institute.
The parade will proceed from Shawnee Park to the WVSU campus where it will go down Campus Walk near the clock tower through the middle of the campus and finishing near the football field.
The football game will be held at Dickerson Stadium. Admission for the game is $20.
Cage encourages everyone to come out and attend the celebration.
“Homecoming is a very special time for us at the university, I invite all members of the community to come out and join in with us here in this very, very special occasion for us here at West Virginia State.”