Homecoming at North Carolina A&T — better known as GHOE — is right around the corner. That means hundreds of alumni from A&T’s Blue and Gold Marching Machine will be returning to reconnect with the program that holds some of its fondest memories.
While in years past this may have included dropping in on rehearsals or joining the band on the track — that won’t be the case this year. A recent communication dropped by North Carolina A&T Director of Bands Dr. Kenneth Ruff outlined some changes they wanted alumni aware of.
For starters, the band room will be closed for all rehearsals.
“The band is significantly larger as you know. There is no room for additional people in the space. The staff is also bigger. There is no space in the office for additional people.”
The memo also made it clear that there is no entering into Truist Stadium with the marching band.
“There is no entrance into the stadium with the band. To enter the stadium with the band, the band and staff must be in full uniform. Staff must also have their athletic sanctioned credentials.”
We all know folks will attempt to finesse their way onto the track. But the memo makes it clear there is a ‘no-hook up’ policy.
“Please do not ask any member of the staff to get you “on the track. That area is closed to only credentialed personnel. The staff is not allowed to grant access for that.”
This apparent change in policy, or more solid enforcement of the policy. It is in line with a recent attempt to cut down on the number of people on the sidelines and track at the stadium that saw the creation of the North Carolina A&T Gameday Ambassador program for former players.
“Enjoy the game and the band from your seats in the stadium,” Dr. Ruff wrote. “Please do not use your relationships and loyalty to ask staff to do things that are against what the university and university band program is requesting. We love you all and appreciate the alumni that assist when asked. That is much appreciated, however, assist without expectation. Let’s have a safe and fun homecoming.”