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Homecoming draws out Bruin spirit, pride

By Brian Sullivan

Oct. 27, 2002 9:00 p.m.

Any perception that Bruins don’t have pride in their
school was erased this weekend.

After a six-year hiatus, a sizable crowd of present and former
Bruins converged on Le Conte Avenue early this weekend to watch
UCLA’s homecoming parade.

A parade of papier-mache floats, fraternity
“cowboys,” sorority “cowgirls,” student
groups and alumni streamed up Gayley Avenue, past a grandstand of
1,600 spectators on Le Conte and continued down Westwood Boulevard
Friday night. The western-themed festivities, dubbed “Wild,
Wild Westwood” started at 8 p.m., and were emceed by KROQ
DJs.

Many attendees commented that they felt the event was a
success.

“I like it when it’s loud and there’s tons of
people,” said Nancy Sin, a first-year undeclared student.

The alumni association sold blue and yellow blinkers for $5 a
pair; many of them were worn as earrings or on sweatshirts, making
the grandstands sparkle with blue and gold lights in the dark night
as the parade passed by.

“There was a sense of excitement in Westwood I
haven’t seen in years,” said Jim Moret, a 1978 alumnus
and master of ceremonies for the rally held afterwards at the base
of Broxton Avenue.

Several students attending felt school spirit had been running
low lately, and thought the revival of homecoming would foster
Bruin pride.

“After watching the past few football games, I think it
was looking kinda grim,” said Chris Foster, a first-year life
sciences student. “This might get us excited,” he
added.

The rally held afterwards seemed to raise school spirit by
bringing the UCLA community together for a night of high energy
camaraderie.

“I think we were really lacking (in school spirit),”
said Kate Stickle, a third-year history student. “But I think
this brings the students and the alumni together,” she
said.

Some of the more noticeable acts of the evening included the
rowing team marching with their oars and singing the nursery rhyme
“Row, row, row your boat,” the Dance Marathon
“cowgirls” straddling toy horses, the alumni scholars
marching to the beat of folded lawn chairs, and the Triangle
Fraternity’s steamship float with members dressed up as
gamblers and prostitutes.

Spirits in the crowd were even high enough to elicit applause
for the UCPD when they were announced, represented by two squad
cars.

At the rally, spontaneous chants of “UC! … LA!”
began before the rally got under way.

Some of the performances at the rally were the UCLA alumni band,
Awaken A capella, and The Providers, an alternative rock group from
San Diego.

There was an awards ceremony during the rally, presenting Alpha
Delta Pi and Beta Theta Pi a trophy for best overall entry in the
parade.

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