It’s that time of year again - time to show your Bobcat pride at UC Merced’s annual Homecoming celebration.
Students, staff, faculty, alumni and the community are welcome to the two-day event, which will include a downtown block party for the first time.
The event kicks off Friday at the Downtown Campus Center (DCC). Since its opening in January, the DCC has helped revitalize downtown Merced and, from 6-11 p.m., it will be the site of new Homecoming events.
UC Merced is partnering with the Merced Main Street Association to host the block party, which runs from 6-9 p.m. at 655 W. 18th St. The event will feature a DJ, booths with free food and a movie screening inside the DCC. The film, Ant-Man and the Wasp, will play until 11 p.m. Shuttle service will be running to and from campus until 11:30 p.m.
RadioBio, a graduate-student podcast team at UC Merced, will host ValleyBio at the Merced Multicultural Arts Center at 645 W. Main St. from 6-9 p.m. There will be displays of local science, art and music, and RadioBio members and Clarissa Noble, Portia Mira and Robert Holland, will discuss the biology of Merced and how community members fit into the fabric of the natural world in the Central Valley.
“UC Merced is excited to have the Downtown Campus Center provide a new spin on the Homecoming celebration,” Vice Chancellor Ed Klotzbier said. “Since it opened at the beginning of the year, the DCC has become an integral part of the university’s mission to be connected to the community, and this presents an opportunity to show its influence in making that happen.”
Saturday’s festivities begin at 10 a.m. with a Bobcat Breakfast in UC Merced’s Pavilion dining center, which opened in August as part of the first phase of the Merced 2020 Project.
Campus tours from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. will allowed attendees to explore the new residential buildings that opened in August as well as provide a look at the construction of the final two phases of the Merced 2020 Project.
“These tours provide a perfect opportunity to see the rapid expansion of the university,” Klotzbier said. “We look forward to the community having the chance to see the future of UC Merced and how the campus has, and will, continue to change.”
Carol Tomlinson-Keasey Quad will be home to the Community Showcase from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Nine groups are set to perform, and there will be tables for community organizations and a chance to speak with UC Merced members about the university.
The women’s and men’s soccer teams will host games at the new Bobcat Field at 1 and 3 p.m. Both teams play the University of Antelope Valley. Tickets are $1.
From 2-4 p.m., Rufus’ Tailgate provides an opportunity to cheer for the teams while enjoying food and other festivities near Bobcat Field, which opened a year ahead of schedule as part of the Merced 2020 Project.
An alumni basketball game featuring the women’s team takes place at Hostetler Court from 4:30-5:30 p.m.
The festivities will be capped off by the Bobcat Boardwalk from 6-8 p.m. A full lineup of casino games, cornhole, food and music will take place along Little Lake.
A full schedule of Homecoming events for families and alumni is featured online and on Facebook.