Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan

Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan

Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan


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“Channel the Flannel” – Winona State University Homecoming 2023

Karleigh Johnson
The WSU Cheer Team passes through Huff Street, hyping up the crowd during the Homecoming Parade.

The Minnesota weather changed right in time and in theme for Winona State University (WSU)’s Homecoming 2023 – Channel the Flannel. A week full of firsts, endess activities and a whole lot of fun filled the Winona community from October 8th to October 15.

One of the first events of the week was the Talent Show and Homecoming Court Coronation. Many students performed various talents that included singing, dancing, playing an instrument, reciting a monologue and even a virtual reality game show. The Somsen auditorium was packed with engaged students and community members. To close the night, 10 students, who were nominated by various campus organizations, answered questions and were represented on stage as the Homecoming 2023 Court. Graduate student Tyler Peil and fourth year Caylee Ludwig were later announced royalty, and Peil spoke on how it felt to be crowned.

“I’m very excited to represent Winona State,” Peil said. “It’s a feeling of accomplishment and it felt great to get involved on campus.”

Peil was nominated by Tutoring Services and is also a member of Student Senate.

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“I pride myself on making a lot of connections on campus and meeting new people, so it’s nice to feel like my connections paid off and people voted enough for me to hold this high honor,” Peil said.

Ludwig was nominated by the Division II women’s soccer team at WSU and became the first athlete to win in over 20 years.

“It felt really great to win, and it felt amazing to have my team there to support me,” Ludwig said. “It was nice to be recognized for other things instead of just athletics and academics; we are recognized for our community service and what we bring to campus too.”

The beginning of the week started off strong, but it was far from over. There were also various events on campus that students were able to partake in, like axe throwing, painting tote bags, draw- ing on the sidewalks with chalk, and searching for a medallion, one of WSU’s traditions. Morgan Minich, a fourth-year student at WSU who is on Student Senate and a member of the homecoming committee, talked about the importance of these events.

“Smaller events during the week are really important because it continues to build that spirit and pride throughout the week,” Minich said. “By the time Friday hits and classes and midterms are over, every- one’s ready to go and have fun.”

Minich expressed her love for the week of homecoming and how it really brings the campus together.

“My favorite thing about homecoming is seeing everyone take pride in the purple that they wear around campus and seeing the sea of purple at the football game,” Minich said. “I love seeing the camaraderie among everyone.”

The end of the week included a pep fest, a parade, and various athletic events for fall sports, such as volleyball and football home games. Peil shared his excitement leading up to those events.

“I’m really excited about the football game; I love homecoming football,” Peil said. “I’m also excited about the parade because this is the first time that I’ve participated in it.”

Minich was also excited about the parade because of its connection to people outside of campus too.

“My favorite event is the parade,” Minich said. “Seeing the alumni come back and everyone out there is a special feeling to see that a lot of people come together and care about the same thing. I feel like a lot of people who come back, as well as current students, want to show their pride and love for Winona State.”

WSU is about more than just one week of fun. While the activities bring people together, the message lies far deeper than that and the people who participate all have one thing in common: the love for Wi- nona State. Peil shared his personal feelings toward the university.

“Winona State is a great university,” Peil said. “It was not my first choice, but looking back, it is definitely my dream school, and obviously, I already graduated, but I came back. That says a lot about the campus community.”

Ludwig wanted to encourage participating in homecoming court and other clubs or activities and mentioned how she was happy that she did.

“If you’re thinking about running, do it,” Ludwig said. “I never would have met the people I did if I did not run. It is cool to see how much goes into it and how well it pays off for the committee. College is definitely the time to get out of your comfort zone and try new things before it is too late.”

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About the Contributors
Reanne Weil
Reanne Weil, News Editor

Reanne Weil is a News Reporter for The Winonan and started in Spring 2023. Weil is a fourth-year at Winona State University majoring in Journalism and double-minoring in Spanish and Creative Digital Media.

In addition to working for The Winonan, Weil is a member and captain of the Division II Women’s Soccer Team at WSU. She is also a member of the Student Athletic Advisory Committee (SAAC).

Outside of school, Weil works remotely for her local newspaper. She loves spending her free time with her friends and family. She enjoys watching the television show Friends and Disney movies with her favorite snack, popcorn and M&M’s.

Karleigh Johnson
Karleigh Johnson, News Reporter
Karleigh Johnson (she/her/hers) is a reporter for the Winonan as of fall 2023. She started off at North Hennepin Community College and transferred to Winona State University in her third year to Major in Creative Digital Media and Minor in both Film Studies and Spanish. 
After attending Nuevas Fronteras Spanish Immersion, Karleigh continues to have a passion for the Spanish language and culture. She studied in Spain through Winona State University in May of 2023. Karleigh enjoys travel, art, writing, photography and videomaking. 
Karleigh participated in the Disney College Program in Spring 2022 and became a Disney Trainer. After graduation, she hopes to return to Disney by working for one of the many media and entertainment companies Disney owns. Her dream is to write her own television show inspired by comedic styles of The Office, Parks and Recreation, Arrested Development, and many others.

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