Homecoming is not just for students — there are an abundance of activities for alumni as well. In fact, for almost 100 years, UNM’s Alumni Association has been putting on Homecoming events, according to Susan MacEachen, the associate director of Alumni Relations.

“This is the 92nd year of Homecoming at UNM,” MacEachen said. “It’s a traditional event. Our goal is to have alumni connect back to the school.”

Homecoming festivities start on Monday, Sept. 25 at 11 a.m. with a Kickoff Rally in the newly refurbished Karen A. Abraham Courtyard at Hodgin Hall Alumni Center.

This year’s theme, “Living La Vida Lobo,” was inspired by some of UNM’s new branding initiatives, according to MacEachen. In a release, the UNM Alumni Association said that it “invites all members of our pack to reignite and rediscover their Lobo spirit with Homecoming 2017’s celebration.”

“We start in the early spring and at least figure out what our theme is going to be,” she said.

Over the years there have been different themes, including: a Star Trek theme to commemorate the life of Leonard Nimoy and a Pirate theme called, “A Lobo Life For Me.”

This year’s activities geared toward alumni will be some of the most comprehensive, according to MacEachen. The budget for the event this year is in the $40,000 range, which is paid for out of non-University, Alumni Association funds. However, some of the events actually raise money, helping defray those expenses and even contributing toward scholarship funds.

“Almost every school on campus is having some sort of celebration for Homecoming Week,” she said. “We have tours of the Office of the Medical Investigator. We have the Chemistry of Green Chile, Maxwell is having an archive tour, the Center for Southwest Research is doing a history of Lobo athletics...there is a plethora of things to choose from.”

The tour of OMI has historically been one of the most popular activities in the past and requires that interested people RSVP on their website, unmalumni.com.

Another popular event is the Homecoming Tailgate, which will take place from 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 30, in North Lot 4, before the Lobos play the Air Force Academy at Dreamstyle Stadium. There will be food options including burgers and craft brews from Bow and Arrow Brewery — a company run by a UNM alum.

“This year we are partnering with Lobo Club and Athletics marketing,” MacEachen said. “Our goal is to attract fans, family and alums.”

While organizations such as UNM Lobo Spirit and Student Activities have scheduled events geared more toward students — such as Homecoming Court elections and the Party in the Pit — Alumni Relations has planned events that will appeal to the wider community of UNM graduates.

From the All University Breakfast — held at 9 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 30 in the La Ventana Room at Embassy Suites — to the Homecoming Community Service Project — which is collecting nonperishable food items and protein-rich food in support of The Storehouse — there is a wide variety of events this week. A complete schedule and more information can be accessed at unmalumni.com/homecoming.html.

Aaron Cowan is a volunteer sports reporter for the Daily Lobo. He primarily covers volleyball and men’s and women’s golf. He can be reached at sports@dailylobo.com or on Twitter @AaronTCowan.