Planning is in full swing for Saturday’s superhero-themed homecoming parade as groups spend thousands of dollars on their floats.
Organizations from Tech and the surrounding areas participate in the parade with hopes of winning the best float award.
Between 50 and 60 groups registered to participate in the parade this year, half of which being student organizations, Jerry Keeton, Coordinator of Student Activities, said.
Tech is coming together with the Children’s Miracle Network to raise awareness and funds for children’s hospitals.
The parade steps off at 10:30 a.m. at Hobby Lobby with the route running north on Dixie Avenue and ending on Stadium Drive.
Fraternities and sororities team up every year for their floats, which make up a large portion of the parade.
“The parade is a fun event but we really love getting to raise money for the kids,” Madeline Reinke, vice president panhellenic of Delta Gamma, said. “We also love growing relations with the community and organizations and supporting Tennessee Tech.”
Reinke said the group of sororities chose Wonder Woman as a “centralized theme of girl power.”
Organizations participating in the parade must pay for their own floats, and there is no cost limit Keeton said.
“The budget for a board-style float could be anywhere from $1,000 to $1,500 to make,” Reinke said.
The groups vie to win awards for best float and entry with the most school pride, Keeton said.
A panel of three judges chooses the winners.
The winless Golden Eagles are scheduled to kick-off against Murray State University at 1:30 p.m. in Tucker Stadium on Saturday.
Tech is looking for its first OVC win of the season against the 4-4 Racers of Kentucky.
Half-time entertainment includes the crowning of Mr. and Miss TTU.
In 2017, Mason Hilliard and Emily Bass won the titles.
“Over the last year, I have represented Tech through my hometown Christmas parade, Cookeville Christmas parade, being a guest speaker at the first annual Lighting Up the Quad for Tech and community service projects with the TTU football team,” said Bass, who is now a graduate student at Tech.
Hilliard, who serves as SGA president this year, said being Mr. TTU was “one of the best experiences of my collegiate years.”
“It has allowed me to show my true Golden Eagle spirit in my ways as well as serving and getting involved with our community,” he said. “It has helped me connect to students on a different level, and I will forever be grateful for this wonderful opportunity.”
Reporter Johnna West contributed to this report.