The Western of fall

Main Street was the main place to be on Friday night as the annual Western Carolina Homecoming Parade made its way to downtown Sylva.  The temperature may have been dropping, but it didn’t seem to bother anyone.  Local families gathered along the curbs and some, along with students, jumped in the back of their parallel-parked cars to take in the fun.

Fun is exactly what it was.

Hannah Whitehead watches the parade as it marches down Main Street. Photo by Jake Myers.

The parade could be built up to be this momentous time for the people of Sylva and the Western Carolina representatives, but it isn’t need.  The smiles on people’s faces said it all.  They were just having a good time.

That was precisely the intention.

“Fight on you Catamounts, fight for purple and gold.”  This first phrase of the fight song instills a type of comradery you won’t find anywhere else.  As a Catamount, you don’t just learn the fight song.

You live it.

And the echoes it created through Main Street brought more chills down the spines of students than the chilled fall breeze.  It’s quite uplifting to see something as simple as a parade rally a group of people.

Floats representing the WCU Dance Team, Catamount cheerleaders, many of the fraternities and sororities, residence halls, local fire and police departments, the Pride of the Mountains Marching Band, and many more rolled down Main Street in exuberance of the unabashed school pride this area shows.

Even Olympic silver-medalist Manteo Mitchell came to be apart of the fun.

But tomorrow there won’t be as many fun and games with the titles of Homecoming King and Queen still up for grabs.  Ten representatives of the Homecoming court, five girls and five guys, are looking to wear the crown that so few have a chance to wear.

It isn’t that dramatic, but it is still kind of a big deal.

Mary Hannah Hughes, running for Homecoming queen as part of the Orientation program, said the parade was all about the float.

Jill West, running for queen as part of the Teaching Fellows program, had a little bit more to say.

Check out the video below.