GREENSBORO, NC -- Many call it "The Greatest Homecoming on Earth!"
Tens of thousands of people will be flocking to the campus of North Carolina A&T State University this weekend for food, fun, and of course, the big game.
The school is throwing a week long party for its 91st homecoming celebration.
“Several schools have pride. We know that,” said Pamela Buncum. “But there is something very special about Aggie pride.”
Pamela Buncum knows all about Aggie Pride.
She graduated from A&T in 1981 and now serves as the chair of the Board of Directors for the NC A&T Alumni Foundation.
Buncum lives in Atlanta but she comes back to Greensboro for homecoming weekend almost every year.
“You put it on your calendar and everything else has to be scheduled around that day as far as I'm concerned," she said.
This weekend, Buncum will be reuniting with old friends and making lots of new friends.
“A&T provided another family for me,” said Buncum. “I think most Aggies can say that. It is a family reunion. When you can come back home and feel the love, I think it's just infectious.”
On Friday, the smell of seasoned beef filled the air outside of the World War Memorial Stadium as vendors spent the day cooking food, setting up tents, and getting their merchandise ready for FanFest.
For Debra Williams, owner of Funnel Queens, this year’s homecoming will be her first.
“I really wanted to come to this event last year but I was too late in signing up,” said Williams. “So this year, I said I'm going to be one of the first ones. So I signed up very early and now I'm here.”
Now, she’s hoping to cash in on the huge crowds.
“I don't see any other funnel cake vendors near me so I'm super excited about making lots of money today,” said Williams.
For other vendors, A&T homecoming weekend is an annual event.
James Dozier, owner of Cameron’s Gear, is selling t-shirts at FanFest for the 10th year in a row.
He says the sales he makes during homecoming weekend will propel his business throughout the year.
“A bad event can sink you. A good event can kind of help you along as far as looking ahead into the future as far as what moves you want to make it how to expand your product and your business,” said Dozier.
While the vendors will make a lot of money this weekend, Buncum says homecoming has a bigger meaning.
“If you want to have a good time and be around a good, lively bunch of people and just automatically be adopted by the Aggie family this weekend, you want to come to homecoming,” said Buncum. “You want to be here!”
The festivities continue throughout the weekend at A&T.
The annual homecoming parade starts Saturday morning at 8:00 A.M. followed by the football game at 1:00 when the Aggies take on Delaware State.
For a list of all the festivities, click here.
Events Schedule, click here.
Beginning at 4 p.m. Friday, the following roads will be closed:
- Perkins Street and E. Washington Street between S. Benbow Road and S. Booker Street will be closed to through traffic and on-street parking will be prohibited.
- On street parking will also be prohibited along S. Booker between McConnell Road and the northern cul de sac.
- Parking will be prohibited along Yanceyville Street between Homeland and Lindsay streets and along Dudley Street between Salem and Lindsay streets.
These roads will be closed starting at 5 a.m. Saturday for the parade:
- Murrow Boulevard will be closed between Gate City Boulevard and E. Lindsay Street.
- Roads along the parade route will be closed: North on Murrow from Friendly Avenue to Lindsay; east on Lindsay to Laurel Street; south on Laurel to John Mitchell Drive.
- Sullivan Street from Benbow to Lindsay streets.
- Lindsay from Yanceyville/Dudley to Headquarters Drive.
February One will be closed to traffic from 10 p.m. Saturday until 3 a.m. Sunday. The city of Greensboro's website has more traffic information.