While there are plenty of people and activities on campus during Homecoming Weekend, most aren’t focused on students. Yes, Bearcats, it’s the one time of the year where the entire weekend does not revolve around you and your drunken revelry. This weekend, it’s about the drunken revelry of Bearcats past. That being said, there are plenty of ways that students can take part in all of the festivities.
The tailgate is the main event of Homecoming Weekend and your prime chance to see alumni drunkenly reminiscing about the good ol’ Harpur College days. Sure, there’s a soccer game afterward and many will make their way down to the field to cheer on the men’s team against Buffalo, but many students will strategically utilize the tailgate as a 3 p.m. pregame in the Events Center parking lot. Entertainment will be provided by local band Splash, and judging by their Facebook, it looks like the crowd will be treated to some irresistible classic ’80s throwback jams.
2. Homecoming 5,000-Meter Run and Walk
Is drinking heavily before a Binghamton University sporting event not your cup of tea? Stop by the annual Homecoming 5,000-meter run and walk. Check-in begins bright and early at 9 a.m. outside the Alumni Center. Prizes will be awarded to the runner with the most BU spirit, so dig out your Bearcat costumes, Parade Day swag and green face paint to exert your dominance over the alumni.
3. TIER Talks
Talks that Inspire, Educate and Resonate (TIER) Talks is the Alumni Association’s regular speaker series, and the Homecoming Weekend edition always features intriguing presenters. This year, on Saturday at 1:30 p.m., a group of alumni will present “Our Political System on Life Support. A Discussion on Critical Intervention as Well as Long Term Care” at Watters Theater in the Anderson Center for the Arts. Anyone and everyone who is feeling disenchanted by our political system during this election season should definitely attend this event to network with some equally angry alumni.
4. Bill T. Jones
If you’re interested in embracing the cultural side of BU’s alumni base, you can’t miss the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company’s contemporary dance performance in the Anderson Center’s Osterhout Concert Theater on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. Jones is one of the school’s most prominent alumni — he started his first dance company here in 1973. Since then, he has gone on to become a renowned artistic director, choreographer and dancer, even winning a MacArthur “Genius” Grant in 1994.
5. Bing Brews and Bands
For most returning alumni, the weekend won’t end after the tailgate. The revitalized Downtown Binghamton area is to woo returning graduates back with a city-wide event organized in partnership with BingPop. From old favorites like the Lost Dog Cafe to new arrivals like the expertly named Garage Taco Bar and The Shop, there will be music and other entertainment going on all night Downtown for all your party needs. So grab your alumni friends and convince them that Downtown Binghamton is still the place to be.
6. Club reunions
Hang out with the alumni from Greek Life, academic organizations and Student Association clubs that you’re a member of. WHRW 90.5 FM will be partying in the basement of New University Union all day long with guest alumni DJs, Chabad will host a Saturday afternoon lunch and the new LGBTQ Center on campus is hosting an open house. There are countless ways to network with alumni over the weekend, but meeting people who used to be involved in the organizations that you are a member of now could be the most fun you’ll have all weekend. Plus, watching those successful alumni stumble down State Street will definitely remind you that you still have a chance.