Wayne State University’s float, “Warrior Strong,” will once again carry green-and-gold pride down Woodward Avenue in America’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on Thursday, Nov. 28. The parade, a time-honored Detroit tradition, will be broadcast nationally, reaching 185 major cities. The parade starts at 8:45 a.m. and the live broadcast begins on WDIV Local 4 at 10 a.m.
“Warrior Strong” debuted last year in celebration of Wayne State’s 150th anniversary. The float is 102 feet long and two stories high (22 feet) — the tallest the Parade Company has ever built — and features a gigantic three-tier cake large enough to feed 150,000 people. The vibrant float also features larger-than-life superheroes carrying giant Warrior shields.
“The float is in part to celebrate all of the great things that have gone on for so long at Wayne State, and to also celebrate the tremendous progress we continue to make,” said Provost Keith Whitfield in an interview with Paul W. Smith at the Parade Company’s annual pancake breakfast.
Four students will help represent Wayne State on the float Thanksgiving morning, including Stuart Baum, Daniel Orhorhoro, Leslie Ortiz and Noor Suleiman. A group of student dancers and friends of WSU will also march alongside the float, in a routine choreographed by Dr. RAS Mikey Courtney, assistant professor of dance in the College of Fine, Performing and Communication Arts, and Hannah Rittmueller, theatre and dance student assistant.
"In the spirit of giving thanks, the Maggie Allesee Department of Theatre and Dance is honored to take part in this event to celebrate our intercultural connection to Detroit, while taking our city to higher heights through movement and dance," said Courtney.
In addition to the “Warrior Strong” float, Wayne State also sponsors the Kermit the Frog balloon, and its Midtown Campus is the hub for all costuming for the parade.
To learn more about America’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, visit its website.