Homecoming float award winners announced at bonfireNov. 4, 1997
By Alyson Ward
Staff Writer for The Baylor Lariat
Thousands of students, alumni, parents and Waco citizens watched Saturday morning as the nation's largest collegiate homecoming parade moved from downtown Waco to the heart of the Baylor campus.
The constant drumbeats from several marching bands set the pace while homecoming queen nominees passed by the parade-goers, wearing tiaras and waving from convertibles. Baylor alumni and administrators passed by, followed and preceded by bicyclists, motorcyclists and the ubiquitous NoZe Brothers. But the highlights of the Baylor 1997 Homecoming parade were perhaps the flashes of color and motion from the student-designed floats.
Seventeen organizations entered floats, the most visible of the parade's approximately 150 entries. Each organization developed a theme with judges in mind. This competition made each group work long hours to give life to their ideas.
Awards were given in three categories and a Judges' Award was presented to the favorite from the entire group.
Two judges looked at the floats this year, said Steve James, Baylor Chamber of Commerce float chairman and a Barrington, Ill., senior. Both were Baylor alumni who had judged the competition in past years.
James said the judges spent about five minutes looking at each float, looking for good use of color, moving parts and solid construction.
'The float that wins year after year is the float with the best color,' he said.
The Judges' Award winners were Delta Delta Delta sorority with 'Raiders of the Big 12.'
Member Robin Dusek, a Cleburne junior, said the sorority worked together with Kappa Sigma fraternity to put the float together.
'The guys put in so much work and the girls did what they could,' Dusek said. 'They just worked tremendously hard.'
Andrea Chalker, a Tulsa, Okla., junior, said members worked on the float for a long time.
'There were people out there all the time,' she said. 'We were up all night long Thursday, putting on the finishing touches.'
Kappa Omega Tau fraternity won in the Class A division with a float based on The Jungle Book. The float featured dancing animals in a jungle with a fraternity member posing as Mowgli and riding an elephant.
Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity was the Class B winner with 'Titanic.'
Float chairman Mike Grabham, a Katy sophomore, said the group got their idea from the recent attention given to the Titanic through a major Broadway production and an upcoming movie.
Grabham said members began working on a nightly basis just a couple of weeks after school started.
'There was usually at least one of the float chairmen around every night,' he said.
In Class C, Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority won with 'The Sky's the Limit.'
Cindy Roach, a Monticello, Ark., junior and one of the three float chairwomen, said the sorority's members had worked on the float since the end of September. Members were encouraged to work on the float as often as they could.
'It was open for everybody every night,' Roach said. 'These last few weeks we had quite a few [people working].'
The three divisions are determined by how much money the organizations wish to spend, James said. Groups in class A are willing to spend an unlimited amount of money on the float, class B groups have a maximum expenditure of $1,500 and class C groups spend no more than $1,300.
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