DeKALB – Northern Illinois University officials said there will be no parade for the 112th homecoming at the university.
Tifarah Jackson, assistant director for the Campus Activities Board at NIU, said in a statement that the Student Involvement and Leadership Development department that has organized the parade in the past has undergone some staffing changes. She said staff resources had to be readjusted to help with student experience at the university.
Jackson said the decision was made despite the parade being a key part of homecoming festivities in the past.
“It will not be possible to complete a successful parade that includes many participants and spectators, given the high-demand on-staff time that is necessary to help ensure a successful parade,” Jackson said in the statement.
Other changes to homecoming events this week include a different approach to Paint the Town, a window-painting competition in which student groups pair up with downtown DeKalb businesses vying for the most school spirit shown.
Jackson said Friday the competition usually involves students painting windows the weekend before homecoming week and five judges choosing the best window display a day after. This year, the competition will be judged by students on social media after the department heard they wanted to participate more in the judgment process, she said.
“So we thought it should be open to the campus community instead,” Jackson said.
Jackson said the top three submissions will earn points toward overall Spirit Awards for the week. She said the winner of the window painting competition won’t be officially announced until the Coronation Cookout, scheduled from 4 to 6 p.m. Friday at Central Park on campus between Stevenson and Grant towers near Stevenson Drive North.
Jackson did not immediately return requests for additional comment Monday from Daily Chronicle.
More homecoming events for this year include the NIU vs. University of Ohio football game 2:30 p.m. Saturday at Huskie Stadium on Stadium Drive South, along with events leading up to it such as the Homecoming Alumni Village tailgate. More events are listed at niu.edu/homecoming.