Behind the scenes of campaigning for Homecoming Queen

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Behind the scenes of campaigning for Homecoming Queen

CW / Joe Will Field

CW / Joe Will Field

CW / Joe Will Field

CW / Joe Will Field

Sara Lang | @saralangcw, Contributing Writer

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UA Homecoming Queen campaigns came to a close this Tuesday, Oct. 22, when elections took place. For some, this meant the end of a stressful month. Ansley Weaver, a junior majoring in communicative disorders, decided to run for Homecoming Queen this year. She had contemplated running before and ended up taking action this fall. 

“I had a friend a few years back, and it kind of inspired me to run for fun,” Weaver said. 

She asked her roommate, junior Terry Mantooth, to help her with her campaign since Mantooth is an advertising major. 

“She asked me, ‘Hey, you’re in advertising, would you like to do this?’ and I said, ‘Why not?,’” Mantooth said. 

She mostly aided Weaver with designing campaign posts and the logo, as well as editing her public statements. 

“I didn’t want to take too much control over what she was doing because I didn’t know exactly everything that was going on, and she was the one running,” Mantooth said. 

Their slogan was “Leave it to Weaver,” which is a play on words based on the sitcom “Leave it to Beaver.” Weaver’s philanthropy was for the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, or ADAA. 

 “I wanted to bring awareness to certain topics like my philanthropy ADAA about the importance of mental health and also wanted to be a positive impact on campus,” Weaver said. 

They raised over $200 for the cause. 

“[Weaver] struggled with anxiety and depression, so it was cool that we raised the money for that,” Mantooth said. 

The campaigning process was simple besides all of the rules imposed. This year for the first time, candidates were not allowed to advertise in GroupMe. 

“It was annoying because I have GroupMes with my friends that have nothing to do with UA, but they’re my friends from UA and I couldn’t even put something in that without it being at risk of being a violation,” Mantooth said. 

They received an email on election day that reported there had been violations made. Even if someone unrelated to the campaign advertised in GroupMe, the candidates would get in trouble. They couldn’t advertise in any academic settings, including buildings. The rules may have swayed potential candidates from running. 

“It was really cool that out of around 35,000 people, there were only six girls that ran,” Mantooth said. “That was really interesting to me. I thought for sure more girls would have run.”

Weaver was surprised as well that there were so few candidates. They focused on their campaign instead of thinking about the campaign as a difficult competition, which helped to ease the stress. 

“We were definitely impressed at how hard they were working on their campaigns,” Mantooth said. “They had all these ideas like food truck partnerships that we hadn’t even thought of. I guess it could be intimidating but I wasn’t too worried about it.”

Tiffany Zahn, a sophomore majoring in international studies, was surprised at the amount of exposure for candidates this year compared to the last. 

“I thought it was really subtle this year,” Zahn said. “I didn’t see a lot of the candidates on Instagram, really only on the day of voting.”

Those involved with the Greek system especially advertise for their preferred candidates. 

“I only really heard from two candidates, and I expected more exposure for the Homecoming candidates because of last year’s intense campaign,” Zahn said. 

Weaver said that the process to run for Homecoming Queen was difficult, but not if you truly wanted to commit to it. 

“It’s definitely a good experience that I think more girls should try to do to get out of your comfort zone,” Weaver said. 

The UA homecoming queen will be announced at the bonfire this Friday night.