- What is Homecoming (also called “HOCO” by the students)?
Homecoming means celebration. It is a weekend with two events- a football game on a Friday evening and a dance on Saturday night. Both held at STH. Homecoming is a “BIG DEAL” in Texas! It is the Fall event that the students look forward to attending every year. There is excitement in the air and nothing but talk about the event. Most 9-12th grade students attend. This is the only date dance at STH that your son as a Freshman will attend this year. (The sister schools have winter formals in January-February where the females invite the male students.)
- What is the date, time & location of both the game & dance?
The dates and times are posted in the BIG RED NEWS, Mother’s Club Newsletter or in the athletic calendar on the STH website. The football game is held at our stadium on campus and the dance is held in CEMO auditorium with a dessert/candy bar in Mary Moody Hall and outdoor seating in the courtyard. *Make sure your son and his date brings their student ID’s to enter both the football game and the dance.
- What does “lock-in” mean for a dance?
Thirty minutes after the dance begins, students are not allowed to leave or enter the dance. We do not want people to wander the campus. “Lock -in” ends thirty minutes before the dance ends. The students are allowed to leave when lock-in ends.
- How does my son get a date?
The students begin looking for dates for Homecoming at the very first home football game. They hangout underneath the bleachers at the stadium near the concession stand talking & introducing each other to girls. Even a shy student can get a date. You will be surprised! Football games at STH are a “Big” social scene not only for students but also for the parents. Come sit, watch a game and chat a bit. We love cheering our EAGLES to victory!
*Along with the football games, St. Thomas also has an orientation dance for the boys to meet girls. Make sure your son also attends the orientation dances for our sister schools – IWA, St. Agnes and Duchesne to have other opportunities to find a date. Those dates & times are posted on their websites.
- Can a STH student ask a girl that does not attend a sister school?
Yes, however, the girl can only attend if she is accompanied by a STH student. All male & female students need their school ID’s at all football games and dances.
- Can boys from other schools attend the Homecoming game & dance?
Anyone is allowed to attend the football game. However, the dance is only for STH students, their dates and sister schools.
- Are there Homecoming invitations?
No, we do not have invitations. Face to face communication is preferred. However, for some reason, this generation does not know how to socialize beyond their phone. Some students ask a girl in a text, there has been posters made, flowers given and even stuffed animals involved in the quest for a date. The students come up with something new every year.
- What is the deadline for finding a date to homecoming?
There really isn’t a deadline. However, you have to consider that his date has to go shopping for a dress unless she already has one in her closet. Also, a “Mum” and a “Armband” needs to be purchased before the football game and tickets need to be purchased for the dance.
- What do students wear to both the game or dance?
The game attire is like any other game-shorts, jeans etc. depending on the weather. However, the dance is semi-formal. Males wear suits or jacket with shirt, tie, and pants. Females wear dresses around their knees. Not too short. Please, refer to the dress code which is written in the STH Handbook online.
- What is a “Mum” and an “Armband”?
A “Mum” is a chrysanthemum flower that has been decorated with little trinkets, glitter, little bears etc. and has ribbons hanging from it displaying the names of the STH student and his date. In the past, the flower was real. The flowers are now plastic. Your son gives the Mum to his date. The “Armband” is a smaller version of the mum which the male student wears on his arm. The female gives the armband to your son. Both students exchange Mum/Armband before the football game on Friday evening either on campus or somewhere else.
- Where can I buy a Mum/Armband (which is only used for the football game)?
*Every year the Music Guild at STHS makes and sells Mums and Armbands as a fundraiser for the school. Please, support STH by purchasing your Mum/Armband from them. NOTE: Mum/Armbands from STH are beautiful & less expensive.
- How much does a Mum/Armband cost at STH?
The Music Guild will post the cost of the Mums and Armbands in either the BIG RED NEWS or in the Mother’s Club Newsletter and provide a link to The Eagle Store where you can purchase the Mum or Armband.
- What is the last day I can purchase a MUM or Armband?
The last day to purchase a Mum/Armband is the Sunday night before Homecoming weekend unless the school says otherwise. If you miss that deadline, call the school or go down to the band room and speak to the Chair of the Homecoming Mums. She might have extras that you can purchase.
- If I buy a Mum from STHS, when & where does my son pick it up?
The Music Guild will post in the BIG RED NEWS or in the Mother’s Club Newsletter times and dates when your son can pick up his Mum. He can also pick up the Armband for his date too if she cannot. Pick up for STH students is usually during the week before Homecoming weekend. Tuesday is for students with last names starting with A-L and Wednesday for students M-Z; Thursdays are for stragglers. *They are not open on Friday.
Make sure your son gets his Mum before that day or he is out of luck! Pick up is in the band room. The line starts down the ramp closest to the glass doors that lead to the gym in Cemo hallway. The line is very long so don’t come early to pick up your son from school. It will take a while. After they verify that your son bought a mum, he is lead down into the band room where he can choose his mum from 300 mums made by the “Mum Moms”. FYI-We need volunteers to help the students with their shopping.
*If you son has practice after school in any sport, he needs to go tell his coach first before he picks up his mum. The coaches know that they need to pick up their them up. They will work something out. Tell your son not to shove his Mum into his backpack. That will crush the Mum and the Mum will not be replaced.
*Armbands are distributed & sold to the female students from the sister schools the week before at each of their schools.
- When & where does my son give his Mum to his date?
You, your son, his date and her parents can work that out. Either on or off campus the Friday evening of the football game. A good option is to meet ahead of time on campus or at the football game so the students can exchange their Mum & Armband right there and you can take pictures. Invite the other parents to come sit with you at the game and get to know them. Remember, this is the first time for them too. We are friendly here at St. Thomas and we welcome our guests.
- Does the STH student and his date exchange corsage & boutonniere the night of the dance?
You are not required, but that is what all the students do. A wristlet (corsage on your wrist) or a small bouquet of flowers is what is popular right now. Note: We do not give flowers to the mother of your son’s date.
- Where can I order a corsage or boutonniere?
At any grocery store with a floral department or a florist.
- Does the dance have food & drinks?
The dance only has a dessert/candy bar, a slushy machine, coffee and water for the students. It’s all FREE!!
- Do the students go to dinner before the game and dance?
It is a challenge to go to dinner before a football game that starts at 7:00pm on a Friday. The concession stand at the stadium can solve that problem. They sell burgers, chicken sandwiches, hot dogs etc. Your son could treat his date by buying her something from the concession stand if he wants. That is optional. The dance usually starts later in the evening on a Saturday so you can go to dinner before the dance if you like. Less stressful on your son if he can get a group together or join a group that is going out to eat. Make sure you book your restaurant two weeks in advance. They get booked quickly due to other schools having the same event. Many restaurants around STH have Homecoming menus. Another great option is for parents to come together and provide a meal at someone’s house.
- Do I contact the parents of his date?
Yes, please, contact the parents of his date to make sure his date told her parents and so that you can coordinate the weekend. Remember, this is their daughter and they don’t know your son or you.
- How much are the tickets to the dance?
The price of the tickets will be posted in the Big Red News or the Mother’s Club Newsletter when it gets closer to the event. * Before you buy your ticket to the dance, make sure it was not already included in a package you pay for at the Walk-A-Thon that is held a few weeks before Homecoming. Look at the Big Red News in the coming months for more information on the Walk-A-Thon.
- When and where can my can my son purchase his ticket for he & his date?
During the week before Homecoming, your son will purchase his tickets. Please, check the Big Red News or the Mother’s Club Newsletter for the announcement of when & where to go. They will also make an announcement to the students that week. * Couples & individual tickets are only sold during school. Sister school individual tickets are sold at the door.
- Can the students arrive to the dance in a limousine, shuttle or bus?
No, they are not allowed. The students that show up in one of these vehicles will be asked to leave.
- Is there a photographer at the dance?
Yes, a photographer or a photo booth will be at the dance.
- Is there a DJ or a band that plays at the dance?
Yes, and he’s Awesome!.
- Where do the students put their jackets, coats or purses at the dance?
There are 2 coat check areas for students to check-in their personal items-purses, high heel shoes and jackets, etc. They must check their items before they enter Cemo auditorium.
- What if my son doesn’t know how to dance?
The students usually form a group and jump up and down. They watch each other and follow. Your son will be okay.
- What if my son doesn’t get a date for Homecoming?
Please, don’t fret. When they post the ticket prices, they also include the individual ticket price. Inevitably there are a group of boys that are single and a group of single girls that have decided to attend. Tickets for the male students are not sold at the door. Females from sister schools can purchase individual tickets at the door. Please, make sure that all students including sister schools bring their student ID’s to the dance.
- How can I help my son with his 1st date experience?
Remind your son that he is a Man of St. Thomas. A gentleman. He represents the school. Show him table etiquette. Remind him of his manners. Tell him to always open the door for the girl and pull out her chair for her to sit. Even if he decides that he does not like his date, be kind and respectful, ask if she wants something to drink and Do Not “Ditch” Your Date. Remind him that it is just a date so have fun and enjoy the night!
- How can I help with Homecoming?
We need all the volunteers we can get. Please, jump in and help!
*The Music Guild needs assistance with making the mums/armbands. You do not have to be a Music Guild parent to help. You do not have to be crafty. If you can use a glue gun, you are in! Everyone is welcomed!
*The Dance Chair & Mr. O’Brien can use all the help they can get too to make this dance a success. Please, help by donating baked goods/candy the day before the dance, be one of the 10-15 volunteers that help set up the Saturday morning of the dance or be one of the 22 volunteers needed to work the dance. Of course, your son will say that he does not want you to be there. However, your son does not realize that there are so many students at the Homecoming dance. It is attended by Freshman, Sophomore, Junior and Senior students multiplied by 2. Your son will not see you. You will be too busy working. Mostly Freshman parents have volunteered in the past to work this dance. It is a great opportunity to meet other Freshman parents and to see what a STH dance is like. We really need all hands-on deck so please consider volunteering!