12 October 2021
To: President Mark Nook
University of Northern Iowa
Cedar Falls, IA 50614
Dear President Nook:
On behalf of the neighbors, businesses, and community on College Hill, the College Hill Partnership wants to convey our surprise and disappointment in relocating the UNI Homecoming Parade for 2021.
Our organization was founded on the desires of previous Northern Iowa President, Ben Allen, to bring all stakeholders to the table to talk through issues and events that impact College Hill and the entire community.
The College Hill Partnership has fostered this partnership by participating in UNI Homecoming Committee and through events on College Hill during Homecoming week. Another way the CHP has been a partner with UNI was to join the University in advocating for measures to keep the community safe during a pandemic. This was an effort many other organizations and leaders were unwilling to do.
Building a solid and healthy community is not just important to our city; it is vital to the success of the University. We know the student experience is not limited to campus. With the Hill being a prominent gateway between UNI and the rest of Cedar Falls, we see the role of College Hill as essential when attracting and retaining students. The Hill needs support from UNI to continue our efforts to promote our city and community. The Homecoming parade is just one way our organizations have worked together in the past to achieve this goal.
We have heard from many community members, including business owners, neighbors, and other College Hill supporters, of their disappointment in the relocation of the parade. This iconic event has been a valued tradition to the Hill. The parade and its long 100-year history have been an important symbol of the excellent working relationship between UNI and College Hill. We hope in future years, the University will consider the importance of the parade to our neighborhood. We urge the University to return the UNI Homecoming Parade back to College Hill.
Kathryn Sogard, Executive Director
College Hill Partnership
on Behalf of the Partnership Board Of Directors