Rock and Roar Homecoming Dance: A Timeless Tradition

Photo Credit: Amanda Davis. From left to right: Kylie Murphy, Mary Merrell, Makenzie Heiss, Treasure Shaker, and Layna Tracey.

Written by Amanda Davis, Feature Editor 

When Michael Smith, class of ’92, was a student at Bryan, Mercer Hall was home to the cafeteria, all administrative offices and almost all classrooms. The Homecoming Banquet was held inside Mercer Hall, and there was no live music or dancing. 

Smith has returned to his Alma Mater several times to perform at the Rock & Roar concert as the Lead Vocalist in the Swingtime Orchestra. This year, he said that singing at Bryan always feels like he is coming home. “Seeing all the expansion, seeing all the kids here, seeing the growth in the last few years especially has been really cool,” Smith said.

Photo Credits: Amanda Davis. Pictured: The Cheer Leading Team. 

The Bryan 2022 Homecoming Rock and Roll concert was held on October 7th in the Triangle. This event was a Sadie Hawkins dance, where the girls are supposed to ask out the guys. Ice cream and a selection of drinks were served and live music and dancing lasted throughout the night.

Makenzie Heiss, senior elementary education major and the President of the Student Government Association, was heavily involved in planning the homecoming activities. She wanted to enjoy her last homecoming as much as possible. “It almost forced me to be more involved, if that makes sense, because it is your last one, you don’t want to miss out on anything,” Heiss said.

Sam Barrick, class of ’07, proposed to his wife Erin Barrick, class of ’08, on the roof of Mercer. Once Mr. Barrick got permission, Tim Shetter, class of ’00, and several other friends of Mr. Barrick covered the roof in tealight candles. Mr. Barrick led Mrs. Barrick blindfolded up the stairs, and she said yes to his proposal. 

The Barricks spent their 2022 homecoming reflecting on their experience at Bryan. “It was such a sweet time, because you were finally independent from your family, and you were figuring out who you are, and Bryan did such a good job of teaching us to figure out who we were in the context of our faith,” Mrs. Barrick said.

Photo: Amanda Davis

Shetter, Alumni Engagement Officer at Bryan College, has seen many different homecomings in his 30 years involved with Bryan, but he believes that this year is special. “It’s two years removed from Covid, but it’s the first year that we’re kind of back to something, things we had done previously,” Shetter said. The Rock and Roll concert was hosted in the Triangle this year, not the soccer field, and many other events were held indoors this year.

Noah DeVries, a sophomore pre-professional biology major, enjoyed the laid-back nature of the dance. “The event itself is just a good time for students to get out of the school rhythm,” DeVries said. 

Amanda Davis is a sophomore communications major and creative writing minor at Bryan College. She is a Kansas City native and loves reading, writing and photography.