Members of the Program Board dressed as characters from “The Wizard of Oz” for the Homecoming parade. Photo by: Jake McLernon.

The George Mason University campus was a blur of green and gold the entire week of Homecoming, as students were eager to show off their spirit and get pumped up for the final festivities of the weekend.

Despite the rainy weather, students, faculty and members of the community came out to watch the Homecoming parade early Saturday morning. Included in the parade were members of student government, resident advisors, student organizations, community members and all of characters from “The Wizard of Oz.”

Directly after the parade at the 13th annual pregame Block Party, students lined the pavement with tents and chairs galore. A number of different fraternities and sororities had tailgating spots, while alumni mixed with students and friends joined each other to visit the heated tents.

“The tailgate was fun because we normally don’t get to do that at Mason,” said sophomore management major Justin Vollmer.

At half time during the men’s basketball game, senior Matthew Casper was crowned the winner of the Mason Majesty Pageant. For the team competitions, Catholic Campus Ministry came in first place while Alpha Omicron Pi with Pi Kappa Alpha placed second, and the Lollipop Kidz, made up of Mason’s orientation leaders, came in third.

“It’s always so much fun to come out and see all the students fill up the seats and sell out the game,” said junior Raffi Paul, a film and video studies major. “I like the mural they painted in Southside and on Skyline too. It looks great. It’s a perfect place for decoration.”

The highly anticipated homecoming talent show proved to be a success as GMUnit, Mason’s all-male a capella group, took first place with their lively performance of Jason Mraz’s “I’m Yours.” Susan Bilodeau placed second while Tim Moorehead, Steve Dunn and Auggy Willman had a three-way tie for third place.

At the second annual lip-sync competition, Calvin Smith and Alpha Phi with Theta Chi tied for first, with Alpha Xi Delta coming in a close second and The Lollipop Kids placing third.

During the week, students enjoyed the company of cheerleaders and guest speakers from the university at the Magic of Mason pep rally, laughed till it hurt at the Emerald City Comedy Jam, tasted delicious treats with the Lollipop Guild, participated in team scavenger hunts and took home some Patriot pride by creating airbrush scarves and hats.

Students let down their hair and danced the night away at the Oz Fest Homecoming dance, complete with a professional photographer set up to take group and couples pictures in front of a backdrop of the glimmering Emerald City.

“I think everyone incorporated the theme very well,” said Michelle Davis, assistant director at the Office of Student Involvement. “At first students were apprehensive to the [theme] idea, but they really warmed up to it.”

The 2011 Homecoming celebrations surprised students by surpassing previous years’ themes with great results. Many thought the Wizard of Oz theme was unique and a perfect fit for Mason.

“I think overall, a lot of people were really into it. It was a really good homecoming,” said junior communication major Lauren Vaughn.