Devotional will kick-off Homecoming festivities



    Tuesday’s Devotional at 11 a.m. will be the opening ceremonies of Homecoming 1999.

    Only those in attendance at the Marriott Center will be able to see the devotional because it will not be televised or rebroadcast on a later date, said Michael Hunter, the KBYU producer of devotionals. It will not be broadcast anywhere else on campus either.

    “You need to be present for the excitement to sustain you for the busy week,” said Ron Clark, the director of public affairs and guest relations at BYU.

    The Opening Ceremonies will kick off the many events that will be happening for Homecoming this week.

    “Everybody’s blood pressure is going to rise at 11,” Clark said.

    Diana Peterson, President of the Alumni Association, will be conducting the ceremonies.

    The Cougar Marching Band will be on hand to hype up the crowd with music, including the Cougar Fight song.

    “(The Cougar Marching Band) is always energy-charged and is just going to pump, pump, pump,” Clark said.

    Family members of former BYU President Ernest L. Wilkinson will be in attendance, because he is the Founders’ Day honoree this year. President Wilkinson was the president of BYU for 20 years, from 1951 to 1971.

    A video tribute to President Wilkinson will be shown after he is honored, said Janielle Christensen, the producer of Homecoming Spectacular and the opening ceremonies.

    In celebration of Founders’ Day, the winning essay of the George H. Brimhall Memorial Essay Contest will be read during the Devotional. The essay entitled “Of Hands and Bicycles,” will be read by its author Daniel K. Westover, a 24-year-old senior from Boise, Idaho, majoring in English.

    Coach LaVell Edwards will be one of the featured speakers at the Devotional. Janie Thompson will introduce Edwards with a song.

    Thompson attended BYU and worked at BYU with the performing groups in music and dance. She will be the grand marshal of the Homecoming Parade on Saturday.

    “She has a history at BYU of half a century,” said Charlene Winters, manager of marketing and communications for the Alumni Association.

    “Janie’s 78 years old, but about 15 in soul and spirit,” she said. “She takes familiar melodies and makes up her own words for them.”

    Winters said Thompson’s song will introduce Edwards but her song will be for the entire football team.

    President Merrill J. Bateman will follow Edwards’ remarks by introducing this year’s Homecoming theme, “Light on a Hill.”

    The finale of entertainment will include music provided by the Cougar Marching Band and a laser show.

    “The lasers are the tip of the iceberg. Lasers will be dancing all over the auditorium,” Clark said.

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