The cheerleading squad of 1967-68 attended a Viking football game this past fall in support of one of its members. MaryLou Wendel Webb was not only a cheerleader back then, but also homecoming queen--a tradition that ended with her crowning. Now 35 years later, she finally passed on the crown at the November 8 game.
"The homecoming event disappeared," says Webb, "in part because the culture in the late 1960s and early 1970s was changing, and there were not enough traditional students to support it."
For the past two years, PSU marketing students have worked to bring back the homecoming tradition. A successful dance in 2002 led to this past fall's week of events, including selection of a court of five men and five women. Sixty-eight students nominated themselves or others and faculty advisers selected the court. Students voted for a king and queen during halftime at the November 8 Vikings' football game against Weber state.
Webb, 56, likes to call herself the vintage queen, and she wouldn't think of ending her reign without the support of squad members. In 1967, the cheerleading squad had no coaches and no uniform budget. They spent their own money, coordinated their schedules, and created their own routines.
Today Webb is a dean at Portland Community College and credits the cheerleading squad with providing early leadership skills in her professional life.