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The first Homecoming parade was at night, of course, as has been true pretty much ever since. Or perhaps you mean, “On what date was the first Homecoming parade?” That would be Halloween night, October 31, 1913. The program that students produced advertised this first march as a “Big, Bouncing Torch Light Parade” that ran through the city’s “Latin Quarter” (Langdon Street) and then down State Street to the Red Gym. Marchers wore “pajamas and other grotesque apparel,” and the parade chairman (equivalent of today’s grand marshal) was recently graduated football star Carl “Coots” Cunningham 1909. This year’s parade will also be at night: it starts at 5:30. Remember that the COVID-19 pandemic is still going on, continuing to warp our sense of appropriate fashion, so pajamas and grotesque apparel will be standard.

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