Karla Reyes/ Contributing Writer
This week, Homecoming kick-off events will be held at the Biscayne Bay Campus, consisting of traditional celebrations and a new one.
Kickoff by the Bay and the Homecoming Dance return this year, while Panther Reggae Fest makes its debut appearance.
The kickoff was held Oct. 13 from noon to 3 p.m. on the lawns behind the FIU Aquatic Center, followed by Panther Reggae Fest on Tuesday, Oct. 14 between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. on the same lawns by the bay.
The dance, which was hosted at the Kovens Conference Center last year, will be held in the WUC Ballrooms on Friday, Oct. 17 at 7 p.m.
According to Maria Barajas, Assistant Director of Development on the Homecoming Council and council member for three years, the council’s budget this year required the addition of a new event at BBC.
Barajas said the council wanted to add the Panther Reggae Fest at BBC because it would foster more school spirit during homecoming week.
“We’ll try it out to see if we’re going to make it a tradition,” said Barajas.
The events at BBC during homecoming week use the open spaces on campus, which are not offered at the Modesto Maidique Campus.
Kelly Ibarra, Assistant Director of Operations of the Homecoming Council, said the scenery is part of the reason why Kickoff is traditionally held near the Biscayne Bay.
“We like to have them there because it’s really beautiful,” said Ibarra.
Barajas said students will be able to kayak on the bay during the Kickoff and Reggae Fest. A jet pack show is also scheduled for later in the day.
In addition to kayaking, there will be bounce houses, free food and games.
The Kickoff will resemble a carnival with different student organizations offering giveaways.
“It’s just celebrating the start of homecoming,” said Ibarra.
The LXV Lounge will be the only event indoors for its Las Vegas theme.
Menissa Rijos, a senior majoring in religious studies, said hosting the Kickoff at BBC is great way to attract students from MMC and other University campuses.
“It’s nice that they thought of students who don’t go to the main campus,” said Rijos.
Vincent Taylor, a junior studying psychology, said it’s a nice effort, but the events at MMC overshadow the ones at BBC.
“I hear a lot about the Panthermonium Concert, but not much about the other events,” he said.