UMES holds homecoming events for alumni and community
PRINCESS ANNE, MD-Hundreds of former University of Maryland Eastern Shore Hawks are flocking to the Shore to take part in the Homecoming 2011 events carved out for the weeklong celebration, Feb. 20-27. Many are open to the public.
“It seems like there is an increased enthusiasm for homecoming this year,” said Kimberly Dumpson, J.D., director of alumni affairs and planned giving at the university. “Hotels in Princess Anne and Salisbury are booked and reservations are now spreading into the outlying areas to accommodate our alumni guests. Online reservations for events are double that from last year.”
A number of the school’s NFL celebrity alumni will be returning for the Mighty Hawks Reunion, a homecoming party on Friday, Feb. 25, at 8:30 p.m. in the Student Services Ballroom on campus. Art Shell (NFL Hall of Fame, Oakland Raiders 1968-81 LA Raiders 1982), Emerson Boozer (College Hall of Fame Class of 2010, NY Jets 1966-75), Carl Hairston (Philadelphia Eagles 1976-83, Cleveland Browns 1984-89, Phoenix Cardinals 1990), Billy Thompson (Denver Broncos 1969-81) and Curtis Gentry (Chicago Bears 1966-68) are expected to attend. Open to the public, tickets are $50.
For the Hawks, homecoming is centered around basketball. Game time is 2 p.m. for women’s basketball and 4 p.m. for men’s basketball action against Howard University. Doors open at noon with a $20 general admission entrance fee.
“Adding to the spirit of the game this year is a revived homecoming parade, which has received a phenomenal response and a new pep band that debuted at the season’s start,” said Dumpson. The parade begins at 11 a.m. in front of the Garland Haward Center on Hobson Street in Princess Anne and end at the Tawes Gymnasium on the UMES campus.
Returning to the homecoming lineup is the President’s Interfaith Prayer Breakfast. Justine Willis Toms, radio talk-show hostess and author of “Small Pleasures: Finding Grace in a Chaotic World” serves as the keynote speaker for the Feb. 25 event beginning at 8 a.m. in the Student Services Center ballroom. Hosted by UMES President Thelma B. Thompson, the breakfast also features entertainment by Rev. Mishael Miller, a music-ministry vocalist from Baltimore. Tickets are $40 each, or $350 for a table of 10.
“The student body is generating a buzz about the upcoming Homecoming Concert featuring R&B and hip hop recording artists Rick Ross, Jeremih, Dondria and the TCB Band,” said James Lunnermon, director of Student Activities at UMES. “The Homecoming Step Show and the Late Night Comedy Show are also always or popular.” B-Phlat, Big Shawn and Lil Duval are the guest comedians for the comedy show, Lunnermon said.
The Homecoming Concert rocks the Hytche Athletic Center on Thursday, Feb. 24, at 7 p.m. Tickets are $20 for students, $35 for non-students. Tickets for the Late Night Comedy Show on Saturday, Feb. 26, at 9 p.m. in the Ella Fitzgerald Center for the Performing Arts are $12 general admission.
Greek-lettered organizations showcase their talent in the art of stepping on Friday, Feb. 25, at 6 p.m. in the Hytche Athletic Center. General admission tickets are $10.
For more information, or for tickets for one of UMES’ Homecoming 2011 events, call 410-651-6669.
Gail Stephens, assistant director, UMES Office of Public Relations, 410-651-7580, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bill Robinson, director, UMES Office of Public Relations, 410-621-2355, email@example.com.