Tallahassee residents will now have to travel to Florida A&M University’s campus to enjoy this year’s Homecoming Parade.
The parade that once started downtown and into the Frenchtown area will now start at the corner of Orange Avenue and Wahnish Way, proceeding north down Wahnish Way to FAMU Way and end at Martin Luther King Boulevard.
Melanie Mitchell, an alumna student from Atlanta, Ga., expressed that changing the route will be easier for students to attend.
“It’s going to make it a lot easier for freshmen and on-campus residents to attend since they live on campus and majority don’t have cars. Also for people who are in the participating organizations will be able to get to the parade setup quicker since it’s so early in the morning,” Mitchell said.
Marvin Green Jr, chairman of FAMU’s Homecoming, explained this year’s homecoming committee voted the redirection of the route. Even though this will be an experimental and not permanent decision for future homecomings, Green wanted to provide a more memorable experience for attendees.
"This will enhance the FAMU Game Day experience and bring the Tallahassee community to our campus and create a vibrant energy on campus the entire day of Homecoming,” Green said.
With the change of location, safety concerns are also taken into factor. One concern would be the potential increase of walking and driving traffic through and around campus.
“Typically large gatherings of people from varying backgrounds bring varying motives for participation, some of which may have a negative impact on crime and safety in and around campus,” Angela Sutton, director of environmental, Health and Safety at FAMU said.
“I’m certain that campus police and public safety are well equipped to manage large gatherings of fans and participants will continue to work diligently to ensure the safety of all campus events,” Sutton added.
FAMU’s Homecoming Parade begins at 8 a.m. on Oct. 17.