MU Greek chapters display decorations and skits for Homecoming

“It’s great to see the fraternity system and the sorority system working hand in hand,” Assistant Athletic Director and Phi Gamma Delta member Gary Link said.

Searchlights dotted the night sky. Flags and an inflatable archway marked the corner of Tiger Avenue and Rollins Street. Food vendors, from Chick-fil-A to Dippin’ Dots to Lakota Coffee, lined the sidewalks. The air hummed with noise as people of all ages filled the streets of Greektown from 6 to 9:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 9, to see the campus decorations and skits prepared by sororities and fraternities as part of MU’s Homecoming celebration.

The Greek chapters, most of which worked in groups of two or three, had spent weeks putting their projects together.

“It’s definitely been a journey ever since the semester began,” said Jack Waddell, Theta Chi Fraternity’s public relations chair and former Maneater staffer said. “We’ve been working a lot of late nights.”

The theme for this year’s Homecoming was “Truman Goes to Work.” Each group was assigned a profession for Truman the Tiger to do during the skit.

Each skit had a key common theme: The University of Florida gator mascot caused trouble, but Truman saved the day, often by starting the famous M-I-Z chant.

Eight judges, split into two teams of four, viewed each group’s skit. One of the judges was Assistant Director of MU Athletics Gary Link, a member of Phi Gamma Delta fraternity, who graduated in 1974.

“It’s great to see the fraternity system and the sorority system working hand-in-hand,” Link said. “It’s great to see all the people out here supporting (them).”

Both the decorations and skits impressed Link.

“There’s a lot of work that these young men and young women put into all of them,” he said. “They were fan-friendly. They were age-appropriate.”

Waddell said he enjoyed working for his fraternity, which was paired with Sigma Kappa last year and Kappa Kappa Gamma this year.

“All the sororities on campus are quality, and we’ve been really lucky,” he said.

Erin Madden, a 1998 MU graduate and member of Kappa Delta, said it felt good to be back at MU during Homecoming.

“(The decorations) look great,” she said. “I think they did a great job on all of them. There are always a few that outshine the others, but that’s okay.”

She also noted how the decorations are different now compared to what they looked like in the late 1990s.

“When I was in school, you got tissue paper and you pomped every single board,” Madden said. “Now it looks like (the chapters) can get a lot more creative with their house decs and make them more three-dimensional.”

While all of MU’s sororities were involved with the skits and decorations, some of the fraternities were not. Instead, Sigma Pi organized a mini-carnival to benefit Children’s Heartlink, and Alpha Tau Omega held a barbecue for Thompson Center, an autism awareness organization.

On the other hand, Delta Sigma Phi and Sigma Nu dropped out of Homecoming within two weeks of the event for undisclosed reasons.

Decorations and skits are only a small part of Greek Homecoming. The chapters also get involved with service projects, blood drives and talent competitions, as well as building floats for the parade held the morning of the football game.

To Waddell, Homecoming is much more than just a competition. He cited philanthropy and school unity as the truly beneficial aspects of the festivities.

“It’s (about) everyone coming together, celebrating the tradition of Homecoming, celebrating being at Mizzou,” he said. “All the good that comes from it, I think that’s more important than winning.”

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