St. Paul campus hosts Homecoming contests

by Joe Carlson

A warming sun shone brightly Tuesday on the St. Paul Campus Mall, as Homecoming royalty hopefuls milked cows and cheer squads chanted their Gopher pride as part of St. Paul Campus Day.
“You couldn’t have asked for a better day,” said cheer competitor Chris Fosland, a biomedical engineering and public relations sophomore.
The event, attended by more than 200 people, was held as part of the ongoing Homecoming Week festivities. It consisted of two contests: A Homecoming royalty event and a cheerleading competition.
“It’s been a lot of fun,” said royalty contender Tony Proell, a pre-veterinary science senior.
St. Paul Campus Day was held in conjunction with a number of other events that have been moved to the campus this year, such as the bonfire and pepfest.
The first event of the day was the Royalty Cow Milking Contest, where four teams of royalty candidates were asked to milk cows into plastic buckets.
“Cow milking was great,” Proell said. Like many of the participants, Proell had never milked a cow before.
Communications sophomore Mike Terrio said the event was more about fun than skill, and that official winners were not chosen.
“We were all winners,” said royalty contender Brook Darst, a political science senior.
Royalty candidates earned points for participating in the event, Homecoming Executive Committee member Thomas Lukanen said.
These points will be combined with candidates’ points from other events, such as the scavenger hunt and ice cream eating contest, Lukanen said. These totals will be used to determine the Homecoming king and queen, who will be crowned at the bonfire Friday.
The potential royalty also took part in two football-throwing contests following the milking.
The other main component of St. Paul Day was the cheerleading competition.
Sixteen teams of up to 15 students each participated in the event. Teams represented University residence halls and the campus greek system, said Terrio, who was also a cheerleading judge.
The greek teams were each made up of members from two fraternities and one sorority, Lukanen said. Each residence hall also had a team.
Cheerleading participant Tami Schmaltz, a sophomore in kinesiology, said her team practiced for a month, at least three or four hours per session.
“I hope we were good enough for the finals,” Schmaltz said.
This event was the first part of the cheerleading competition, in which five fraternity-sorority teams and two residence hall teams were chosen as finalists, Lukanen said.
These teams will compete again Wednesday on the Superblock in Minneapolis for the championship. The results of that competition will be revealed Monday.
The teams’ two-minute routines were judged by a panel on the basis of costumes, crowd response and meaningfulness of cheer, along with other factors, Homecoming Executive Committee member Mark Rice said.
Each event was part of a general effort by the Homecoming committee to bring some of the spirit of Homecoming to the St. Paul campus.
“This is a good way to join the campuses together,” said royalty contender Shilpa Patel, a senior in environmental science.
Sean McTaggart, a criminology junior who attended the St. Paul Day festivities, said, “I didn’t even know there was a St. Paul campus when I was freshman.”