By Helena Rodriguez
Things are already starting to look green around town this week as Eastern New Mexico University kicks off its 2003 homecoming celebration.
Under the theme “Classic Movies,” events have already kicked off, with many more planned throughout the week, all leading up to Saturday’s big homecoming parade at 10:30 a.m., and Hall of Honors homecoming football game at 2 p.m., when the Greyhounds take on Angelo State University.
New events this year will include an Alumni Art Show in the Campus Union Building Aztec Room, a AHORA (Association to Help Our Race Advance) reunion, an exhibit and book sale at the Golden Library featuring publications by ENMU alumni and a post game social for all alumni at The Roosevelt restaurant until 8 p.m. on Saturday.
“We hope to get all faculty, staff and area people out to kick off the homecoming week,” Janice Cowen of the ENMU Alumni Affairs office said. “We’d really like everyone to stop by the alumni registration table in the Campus Union Building on Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.”
Cowen said ENMU wants to make the art show an annual event, saying, “We have a lot of talented students and artists that are alumni that we are trying to showcase.”
In addition, Cowen said ENMU has many high-profile writers who are alumni that will be featured in the book sale, including John Douglas, who helped create the FBI profile system, and Barbara Russell Chesser, who has written many books, including “21 Myths That Can Wreck a Marriage,” and has been included in several “Chicken Soup for the Soul” books.
Cowen estimates that about 5,000 people attended the annual homecoming parade last year. This year’s parade begins on the corner of East First Street and goes South down Abilene to the ENMU campus.
In keeping with the classic movies theme, the ENMU Theater Department will present an American classic, “Picnic,” by William Inge, which was a Broadway hit and was turned into an Oscar-winning movie.
“‘Picnic is a heart-warning comedy that appeals to many different kinds of audiences,” said Anne Beck, professor of theater at ENMU. “The homecoming production is normally one of our biggest productions of the year.”
Other homecoming events will include a concert by Thomas Poole, an ENMU professor of music and a renowned tenor who performs in prestigious operas and performing arts companies, including the New York City Opera, the San Francisco Opera and the New York Philharmonic. Soprano Jeanie Wozencrofft-Ornellas will perform with him.
In addition, there will be an ice cream social, campus cookout and pep rally and bonfire on Friday. On Saturday is the Friends of Eastern Breakfast and induction of Greyhound Hall of Honor recipients and the presentation of the 2003 homecoming court at the game. The honorees include U.S. Federal Judge Robert Brack and Gov. Bill Richardson.