The Ball State Homecoming Steering Committee has released this year’s Homecoming theme and future festival plans for the 91st anniversary.

The theme is “Cardinals Around the World,” promoting a week of travels and traditions.

Homecoming Steering Committee General Chair Catherine Burgess said the committee, made up of nine students and two advisors, wanted to create a theme that didn’t just focus on Muncie.

Homecoming facts:

  • The largest Homecoming football crowd was 21,527 in 1997 against Central Michigan.
  • There has been Homecoming royalty since 1938, and a king and queen since 1986.
  • The Homecoming parade started in 1939.
  • Homecoming Talent Search/Varsity Show started in 1967.
  • Homecoming Bed Race was introduced in 1980.
  • Homecoming Air Jam has been going strong since 1987.

Information according to

“We wanted to take the traveling thing around the world because there are alumni all around the world,” Burgess said. “We also want to encourage our students today to study abroad and go out there and explore, because there is a lot out there.”

The theme will open up multiple opportunities for students, Burgess said, as they can stick with the traveling theme or chose to showcase a specific country.

“You can add your own spin and make it unique,” she said.

The committee will also be bringing something new to this year’s festivities.

There will no longer be a Homecoming Village. Instead, the group is planning on hosting a “Taste of Homecoming” food truck festival, along with a live performer.

Even though the event is “still in the works,” according to Burgess, she said the idea behind the change was due to a monetary concern after committee members realized people weren’t as engaged in the Homecoming Village. The team wanted to create something that would save money and revamp the week.

“We wanted to focus on what the community and students would be more interested in and we think that would be food and live entertainment,” she said. “The food trucks that we bring in are always very popular."

The food trucks will represent different types of food and cultures to go along with the theme.

All of the other Homecoming traditions, including the Talent Search, Campus Dinner, Air Jam, Bed Races, Parade, Football Game and 5k Run/Walk will still take place.

“This is the perfect way to showcase that college spirit that we have for Ball State,” Burgess said. “It is one of the longest running traditions on campus, so be a part of it. Dive in and go to everything.”

Burgess encourages students to get involved Homecoming week, which will be October 16 through 22. Ball State football will be hosting Central Michigan Oct. 21 at Scheumman Stadium.