Gearing Up for Game Day

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WAA welcomes Class of 2013 into Fifth Quarter tradition.

First-year students learn the “Section O” cheer as part of WAA’s special Fifth Quarter Celebration designed to teach beloved Badger game day traditions. Photo: Andy Manis

First-year students learn the “Section O” cheer as part of WAA’s special Fifth Quarter Celebration designed to teach beloved Badger game day traditions. Photo: Andy Manis

Ever wonder how new students learn the traditions that make up the post-game Fifth Quarter festivities? WAA makes it easier with a special celebration led by UW Marching Band Director and Fifth Quarter founder Mike Leckrone.

This year’s September 3 event kicked off with an ice cream social on Engineering Mall for all first-year students. New students mingled before filing into Camp Randall Stadium, where they were greeted by UW football head coach Bret Bielema and the 2009 team captains. The third-year coach stressed the importance of the crowd’s energy.

“We come on and off the field here for a reason,” Bielema said, pointing to the tunnels under the student section. “We enter and leave by [the student section] because you energize us.”

Then, as members of the football team exited the field, the band entered and opened with several stanzas of “On, Wisconsin!” before moving on to all the UW postgame classics, leading students through the lyrics and dances that accom-pany each one.

The nearly full Section N of Camp Randall Stadium set a new speed record for “The Chicken Dance,” learned the words to “Time Warp” from the cult classic movie The Rocky Horror Picture Show, and linked arms to sing their first rendition of “Varsity” as the class of 2013.

For marching band member Ben Wagner x’10 the event was a way to blur any student divides — because in the end, he notes, we’re all Badgers.

“The Fifth Quarter is a celebration of all things Wisconsin, so initiating the freshmen into that tradition really helps build school spirit and a sense of Wisconsin pride right away,” the senior mellophone player said. “At the first game, it will be impossible to pick out the freshmen in the student section, and that’s the way it should be.”

First-year students learn the “Section O” cheer as part of WAA's special Fifth Quarter Celebration designed to teach beloved Badger game day traditions. Photo: Andy Manis

First-year students learn the “Section O” cheer as part of WAA’s special Fifth Quarter Celebration designed to teach beloved Badger game day traditions. Photo: Andy Manis

Published in the Winter 2009 issue

Tags: Alumni, Athletics, Student life, Students

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