Members of the Miami University and Oxford communities are teaming up to bring Red and White spirit to Oxford.
In order to increase Miami and Oxford pride, a community group called the Chamber of Miami Business Alliance (Chamber MBA) is in the process of creating and promoting an event called “Paint the Town Red.” This group has been meeting for the past year and a half to two years, according to Miami University Dean of Libraries and former Oxford Mayor Jerome Conley.
Conley said that the goal of this event is to bring about a sense of Miami pride, specifically during football season.
This event encourages businesses, residents and students to show their Miami pride by displaying flags or by wearing red to support Miami.
“We want opposing teams to know that they are coming into RedHawk territory where we cheer on our teams,” Conley said.
Sophomore Anna Swanson, whose parents are planning on visiting during family weekend, said the push for school spirit is necessary.
“In my opinion, the university is the biggest establishment in Oxford,” she said. “The university claims a wide variety of students. The surrounding town works off of that. I think there’s a lot of spirit and pride.”
Although this event is currently focused on promoting spirit during football season and family weekend, Conley said he hopes that it will soon extend all year round, which would differentiate it from homecoming.
Swanson said that she wasn’t well aware of many homecoming activities and that the scale of this event might make it more noticeable than homecoming. She also said that the university’s All-in Friday campaign is a good way to support Miami year round.
By increasing community spirit, Chamber MBA hopes to advertise Oxford as a destination and allow people to recognize that Oxford is a wonderful place, said Conley.
“What we’re trying to do is highlight the treasures we have here in the city, from performing arts series to Hueston Woods and the covered bridge,” he said.
Sophomore Gilberto Brito said he believes that increased spirit in businesses and Oxford residents will make students more proud.
“People will have as much spirit as the area around them,” he said.
Similarly, Swanson said that she thinks this will bring people together.
“I think it invokes the idea of community, family,” she said.