Living in the Merriam Park neighborhood, my family has always looked forward to the University of St. Thomas fall homecoming parade which goes down Summit Avenue. We would bundle up and walk from our home down the streets golden with fall colors, shuffling through the piles of leaves as we went. The crowds along the parade route were always small until the parade—with marching bands from UST and area high schools—nears the campus. That meant we could take advantage of the free hand outs and candy from neighboring businesses, radio stations, and student floats in the parade. And we were always on the look out for St. Thomas homecoming royalty, cheerleaders, and the UST mascot, “Tommie.”
After the parade, the Student Alumni Council hosts the “Taste of Saints,” where student clubs and organizations sell food and drinks while families take advantage of the free children’s activities. That’s all the preamble to the early afternoon football game.
“Neighbors are welcome to attend – the more, the better,” said Doug Hennes, a St. Thomas spokesman. “Families love the parade on Summit Avenue and the chance to check out all of the activity in the quad before the game.”
“Now, if we can just get some nice weather. “ Hennes continued. Weather predictions are not promising. The Taste of Saints will be moved indoors if necessary but the parade will continue rain or shine.
Here is the schedule of Homecoming Events:
Homecoming 5K Run/Walk: The UST Wellness Center hosts this annual run/walk for all students, faculty, staff and alumni. The event begins at 9 a.m. at the Summit Avenue arches. Check-in begins at 8:30 a.m. in the Fireside Room of Koch Commons. Registration forms are available online. It’s free for students, $7 for faculty and staff, $10 for alumni and $15 for family and friends.
Homecoming parade: The parade begins at 10 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 8, along Summit Avenue between Fry Street and Cretin Avenue. Watch for floats, bands, cheerleaders and, of course, the St. Thomas mascot, “Tommie.” (Free and open to the public.)
Taste of Saints: The university’s Student Alumni Council hosts this annual fundraiser for student clubs and organizations. At this giant tailgate party you can visit with friends, entertain the kids and catch a bite to eat before the football game. It lasts from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 8, on the main campus quadrangle. Admission is free and open to the public.
Football game: The Tommies take on the Royals of Bethel University at 1 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 8, on Palmer Field at St. Thomas’ O’Shaughnessy Stadium. Gates open at noon. Tickets are free with a UST ID and $6 for adults, $3 for students and free for kids under 5.