Freed-Hardeman University's Homecoming 2013, Nov. 4-9, had something for everyone to enjoy—in a more centralized location than in previous years. Everyone gathered near the sports center for tailgating, the Pride Walk, FHU Marketplace, Kids Fun Zone, lunch and the basketball games. "It seemed to be a more festive atmosphere since everyone was in the same place instead of being spread out across campus," Ryan Malecha, director of alumni relations, said.
The Homecoming King and Queen were crowned in a chapel presentation Wednesday, Nov. 6, in Loyd Auditorium. Weston Keen of Portland, Tenn., and Rachel Hoyt of Yorktown, Ind., were chosen for the honor by their fellow students. They were presented to the Homecoming crowd Saturday at the basketball game.
Keen, a biochemistry major, is the son of Ricky and Kay Keen. He has been involved in social club Chi Beta Chi, the Biology Club, Alpha Chi and FHU's chapter of the American Chemical Society. Hoyt is the daughter of Gerald and Maria Hoyt. An English and secondary education major, Hoyt has been a member of social club Phi Kappa Alpha, Alpha Chi, the Bell Tower staff and the cross country team.
FHU Theatre presented "The Secret Garden," a musical based on the classic children's novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett, Thursday-Saturday. The play follows the orphaned Mary Lennox as she moves to England to live with her embittered uncle and his invalid son. As she adjusts to the lonely Misselthwaite Manor, Mary finds a hidden garden and determines to nurse it. In time, she restores the garden and hope to those living in the manor.
Saturday morning began with a pancake breakfast hosted by the FHU Associates and a 5k run to benefit Mid-South Youth Camp. A record-breaking 80 runners participated in the run. An expansion of the traditional barbecue lunch made it available to all Homecoming attendees.
Throughout the week, social club competitions organized by the Office of Alumni Relations and the Student-Alumni Association were underway. Winners were announced at the Homecoming basketball game. Activities included "Puff It Up," a flag-football competition; "Rev It Up," a soapbox derby race; and "Pep It Up," a pep rally for students and alumni. Phi Kappa Alpha won first place overall in the club competitions; Chi Beta Chi won second place; Xi Chi Delta won third place. Theta Nu won the Amy Glass Spirit Award.
Lady Lion and Lion basketball teams completed the weekend with Homecoming victories. The women defeated seventh-ranked Cumberland University, 74-62, and the men posted a 90-76 win over Fisk University.
"We are already making plans for Homecoming 2014," Malecha said. "We hope even more alumni will choose to come back Nov. 8, 2014, for all the fun."