School spirit overflows at campus block party


With music by Coog Radio and activities from clubs and organizations, UH hosted a Homecoming Block Party for students to share their spirit. | Isabella Serimontrikul/The Daily Cougar

Students huddled close to the stage in excitement as the Cougar Fight Song fanfare blared to kick off an evening painted in red with plenty of free food and fun during UH’s newest tradition, Homecoming Block Party.

From the furthest corners of campus, students gravitated toward the roaring jamboree at Lynn Eusan Park, where they were exposed to the multitudes of student groups, clubs and organizations. Students from all walks of life, like communications freshman Sarah Hoffman, came to make new, unique memories.

“(The block party) improves the experience of college that everybody talks about. What everyone wants is that entire experience — not just the classes,” Hoffman said. “It gets the students involved and brings them together.” 

Students joined hands in this community-building experience, which also commemorated the first African-American homecoming queen, Lynn Eusan. The essence of the party was captured by Vice Chancellor and Vice President of Student Affairs and Enrollment Richard Walker in his brief speech on the park’s newly built stage.

“It’s a great way to celebrate using Lynn Eusan Park. This party is a great way for students to get together, celebrate being a Cougar, and enjoy these festivities,” Walker said. “That’s what Homecoming is about: celebrate the present as well as those who graduated from here in the past, and to invite everybody back on the campus to celebrate just being a Cougar.”

Drenched in red Cougar pride, games like whack-a-bro, cupcake walk, horseshoes and more enticed students by fostering community connections. Theater senior Kennia Martinez was ecstatic when she allowed her senses to guide her to the party when she biked from Moores School of Music. 

“I’m big on music, so if I hear festivities going on, it’s going to catch my attention. I’m definitely going to want to get there,” Martinez said. “There is always something going on, and I love it; it makes me proud to be here. They take care of us. I dig it.”

Though the Homecoming Board was pumped about the event, coordinators were already looking ahead to make events more spectacular. For education junior and assistant director of Homecoming Board Hugo Basurto, working toward bringing in bigger performers may be the trajectory of Homecoming.

“I want the whole campus to kind of experience it, but this is only a portion. We’re known as a commuter school, so you can imagine if everyone were to come to this event. It would be like … going crazy,” Basurto said. “Get Beyonce out here, get Jay-Z, get someone big to come out during Homecoming. Other schools have it — why can’t we?”

Though students enjoyed the live music, games and company, supply chain management junior Marc Benitez was most excited about the rest of the week leading up the home game on Saturday.

“It’s Homecoming Week, it’s a time to get ‘Coog-ed’ out. I’ve been to Homecoming Week the past three years. It’s always pretty much the same. I’m looking forward to the tailgate; that’s the most fun,” Benitez said.

“Go Coogs. Let’s go get some beer.”

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