Platteville Homecoming During the Pandemic


Morgan Fuerstenberg graphic

The UW-Platteville campus prides itself on many things, including its Homecoming. Shelby Lang, who works in Alumni Relations and serves as the Campus Alumni Manager, accepted an offer for an interview. Lang has helped plan three different Homecomings, each coming with their own challenges. 

Lang stated throughout the interview that “Homecoming brings all of campus together to really celebrate what Pioneer Nation is all about.” The staff of the UW-Platteville campus, as well as the community, pride themselves on their extravagant event. “I would really like to see how many other schools in the state, or even in the nation, still have Homecoming parades, light fireworks, have community celebrations, free lunches and really just go above and beyond with this activity like we do,” said Lang.

Planning for Homecoming this year looked a little bit different for Lang and her colleagues. She stated that they had to have “A-Z plans.” With so much up in the air yet, they had a plan for everything. Lang said, “We didn’t even know if we could have Homecoming until August.” Lang went on to describe how much time and effort went into deciding what the best plan was in order to protect the students, the staff and the community. “When it comes down to it, we are all just visitors to the Platteville community. Their safety is very important to us,” said Lang.

When asked about how COVID-19 has directly affected the attendance numbers for Homecoming, Lang replied, “Not as much as you may think.” In 2019, they had just over 900 people come to the community lunch. In 2020, they had 775 people come to the lunch, despite it only being advertised for two weeks. 

Aurora Grivetti, a UWP student who attended some of the Homecoming events, said, “I’ve never been to a Homecoming before, so this experience was awesome. I think Platteville definitely takes this to the next level.” Grivetti participated in the volleyball games, created a float for the parade, was there for trivia night and attended the football game. Grivetti said, “It was definitely a busy week or two, but it was well worth it. I am already looking forward to next year!”