Northwestern Homecoming was an all-around success; Homecoming 2018 date set

October 9, 2017

Reigning Ranger Royalty 2017


Ranger Royalty flower girl Lilli Redinger (front left) and crown bearer Ben Lauderdale (front right) escorted (back row, left to right) Sadie Vore and Demetri Wilson who were crowned Ranger King and Queen during Northwestern’s Homecoming halftime event. Freshman Queen Kelsi Smith was named in an earlier on-campus ceremony and joined the group for the halftime event.

Hundreds gathered around the downtown square on Saturday, Sept. 30, for Northwestern Oklahoma State University’s annual Homecoming parade, then headed to Ranger Field to watch the massed bands perform, learn who the Ranger Royalty and homecoming button winners would be,  and to watch a close Ranger football game, all to celebrate Northwestern’s homecoming.

The theme was “Come Back, Give Back, Continue the Legacy…” People came from all over to be in Alva for this event.

Leading the parade on Saturday was parade marshal Dr. Peggy Wisdom, 1968 graduate of Northwestern. Wisdom has developed a distinguished career in medicine and teaching. She is a professor and vice chairman of neurology at the University Of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.

After the conclusion of the parade, the winners of the floats and bands were announced.

First place for on-campus floats was Alpha Sigma Alpha, second place was Delta Zeta, and third place was Northwestern’s Student Government Association (SGA).

In the off-campus, non-profit float category first place went to Cherokee Strip Museum #1, Rose Blunk’s float; second place to the Woods County Democrats; and third place to Cherokee Strip Museum #2, Yvonne Thilstead’s float.

For the off-campus, commercial business float category, first place went to Alva State Bank, second place to BancCentral and third place to Beadles Nursing Home.

The President’s Award and Northwestern’s Alumni Ranger Spirit Award for floats both went to Alva State Bank.

Northwestern’s Homecoming was less than 100 people shy of having a 1,000-person band on Ranger Field for the Massed Band Performance.

Bands who participated in the parade and received placements in the middle school category included first place going to Pioneer-Pleasant Vale Middle School, second was Blackwell Middle School; first place for 2A was Pioneer-Pleasant Vale High School, second was Laverne High School; first place for 3A was Chisholm High School, second place for Alva High School; first place for 4A was Hugoton High School, second place was Kingfisher High School; and first place for 5A was Woodward High School.

Nearly 1,000 students from 22 bands from Oklahoma and Kansas participated in the parade and the massed band performance.

Northwestern played host to several other activities from pep rallies and reunions, to the annual collaboration of the current and past band members, and the current and alumni cheerleaders, as well as the crowning of the Ranger King and Queen.

Northwestern’s Ranger Royalty was announced during the halftime event. Ranger King is Demetri T. Wilson of Homestead, Florida. He is a junior double majoring in criminal justice and health and sports science. Wilson was sponsored by the Northwestern Football Team. He is a student assistant coach for the team. Wilson is the son of Clayrinski D. Wilson and Akiko Wilson.

Ranger Queen is Sadie Vore, a junior early childhood education major from Burlington. Vore was sponsored by the Baptist Collegiate Ministry, and she is the Student Government Association secretary. Vore is the daughter of Shane and Shannon Vore.  

Kelsi Smith of Burlington was crowned Freshman Queen during the Ranger Royalty Finalist banquet. Smith is a nursing major. She is the daughter of Aaron and Kandi Smith.

Winner of the Northwestern homecoming button drawing for the $500 Alva Chamber Bucks is freshman Mason Monsees of Enid, criminal justice major.

Northwestern’s on-campus activities had a great turnout of decorations that showed Ranger spirit.

First place for the on-campus Paint Palooza Board Competition was Math Club with the International Student Association taking second place.

The winner of the residence hall decoration contest was Fryer Hall.

The building winner was Carter Hall for the Division of Nursing.

Northwestern’s Homecoming Committee added a drawing incentive for button salespersons where two winners could take home $50 in Chamber Bucks. The winner of the drawing for button salespersons for on-campus sales was Valarie Case, university relations specialist for Northwestern, and the winner for off-campus sales was Michelle Shelite. 

“Thank you to everyone who sold and purchased Northwestern homecoming buttons and to those merchants who provided incentives to be used with these buttons,” Karen Koehn, Homecoming button chair, said. “This is a great community, and the support you invest in our university’s homecoming is heartwarming! Homecoming festivities are only successful when the entire community comes together to make it work! You continue to inspire me and restate my favorite saying, ‘Lucky me…I live in Alva, OK!’”  

Homecoming is a community effort and the homecoming committee is grateful for everyone who made the week and official homecoming day a success.

“This year’s homecoming was amazing,” said Dr. David Pecha, homecoming chairman and vice president for administration. “There are so many hard working people to thank for putting in countless hours to make it the incredible event it was for not only Northwestern students, faculty and staff but the entire community as well.”  

Homecoming 2018 is set for Oct. 6, 2018. Be watching for a contest to open during the spring semester to enter ideas for next year’s homecoming theme and parade marshal. Until then, a website has been established for people to enter the competition at The homecoming committee will consider all entries and make an announcement of the new theme and parade marshal during the spring semester.

Photos from the homecoming events can be found at


Ali Gavitt, University Relations Specialist; 580-327-8480

Northwestern Oklahoma State University

709 Oklahoma Blvd., Alva, OK 73717
Phone: (580) 327-1700

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