Let's go Stingers!
The fall term may have started nearly a month ago, but that doesn’t mean the festivities at Concordia have died down.
Last Friday was the Concordia Stingers football team’s first home game of the term and that means only one thing: Homecoming!
In my three-and-some years at Concordia, I have attended plenty of on-campus events as both a journalist and student executive, but Friday marked my first time attending a Homecoming game.
Concordia’s SWARM (Students With Athletes Representing MaroonN'Gold) started the night off right with pre-game festivities at The Hive, a hot spot for social events on the Loyola Campus.
SWARM is a student-run group that came together last fall with the goal of increasing pride in the Concordia Stingers and making it fun to attend sporting events and cheer on the university’s student athletes. As someone who has organized on-campus events before, I have to say that this group knows what it’s doing.
My friends and I got to The Hive around 6 o’clock and the pre-game party was already in full swing with nearly 100 students representing Concordia in maroon and gold T-shirts and hoodies. SWARM provided students with free drinks and members of the group were painting students’ faces. I opted for a couple of maroon and gold stripes on my cheeks, but many went all out with their entire faces covered in paint. A daring few even braved the cold and went shirtless with painted stomachs!
SWARM handed out free T-shirts and sunglasses, as well as noisemakers and foam fingers (my personal favourite keepsake from the night) for students to use during the game.
Just before kick-off, we paraded to the field together, blowing vuvuzelas and led by a SWARM member carrying a giant Stingers flag.
The game between the Stingers and the Université de Montreal Carabins kicked off at 7 p.m. Stingers fans sat together, dancing, beating drums and chanting encouragement for our team.
The Stingers ended up losing 38-0, but those in the stands seemed to have a good time nonetheless. I spoke to Aleksandar Tomovi?, VP Communications of SWARM, to find out what he thought of the game’s turnout.
“The game actually had a great turnout with a bigger crowd since the stands were pretty full with additional Stingers and SWARM fans,” he said. “We were very happy with the turnout and wish to keep reaching out to students so they get to enjoy this aspect of university life. The SWARM is pushing for Concordia and Stingers pride to be more present! These events we throw only come to prove how fun student life can be aside from the studying and exams.”
I also spoke to some Concordia students after the game about what they thought of the event and why they chose to join the SWARM for the night.
“I've never seen so much maroon and gold in one place!” said JMSB student Amanda Woo. “It was great to see students showing their Stingers pride. Fans were louder and wilder than the mascot! It was my first time going to a Stingers game, and I would definitely do it again.”
“I have been to previous Stingers football games and would go again,” said Shannon Gallant, a fourth-year International Business Co-op student. “In a university as large as Concordia, it’s nice to have students from all different faculties cheer on the team and demonstrate school pride.”
You can stay up-to-date on the many SWARM events that will be happening this year by liking the Concordia SWARM Facebook page. The Stingers football schedule, as well as the schedules for all Concordia Stingers teams, are available online. If you want to join in the SWARM fun, meet your fellow Concordians and support student athletes, just throw on your school colours and get ready to cheer!
See you in the bleachers!
• Concordia SWARM on Facebook