BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — This week the UAB Blazers are celebrating homecoming with a full week of festivities planned.

They’re going retro, kicking it back to the early 2000’s with this year’s homecoming theme of “Y2Blaze.” On Monday, final touches on decorations are going up with something new and fun to look forward to each day this week.

Tuesday, the new Blazer Build It Competition will take place. Each school and department have the chance to create a decorative piece in honor of homecoming.

Wednesday, the Gurney Derby returns. School officials said it’s one of the most unique homecoming traditions in the country. A record number of teams are set to show out for the relay this year.

Thursday, UAB’s Alumni Office will introduce their annual Uncork Education Event to homecoming week. It’s their largest fundraiser for scholarships.

Kyle Adams said building tradition is important to their student body.

“We’ve got a lot of growth happening regularly,” said Adams, who also serves as SGA president. “So, students get to contribute a lot to what they want to be the tradition at our university because we don’t have things that have happened for 100 years already. So, every single thing, there’s a lot of influence from the students and what we’re doing. So, that’s really exciting for me.”

Mack Ingram, Director of Engagement in the UAB Alumni Office, said it takes a lot of planning and preparation to make everything that’s a part of homecoming week a reality. Initial stages of planning start months prior in the spring.

“Many of these groups that have been planning for these competitions, and their costumes at the Gurney Derby, their passenger they put on the gurney, what they’re doing on the Blazer Build Boards, for two and three weeks,” said Ingram. “They really get intense about winning these trophies and winning these things and displaying them in their schools.”

Adams said homecoming week allows the opportunity to welcome everyone back to celebrate the legacy of UAB past, present and future.

“I really like the chance for students to engage with the rest of the student population,” said Adams. “We’ve got lots of students that have gone on to be really successful on our campus that are coming back to be able to show students what they can be once they’re graduated.”

Those who’ve walked this campus share a certain history, uniquely bonded together through the university. Ingram said that shines through during homecoming celebrations.

“It’s the one week where everyone kind of puts down what they’re doing and comes out to celebrate and enjoy really what UAB is about and the pride that it’s built over the years and really celebrate where we are going as well,” said Ingram.

UAB homecoming week will all lead up to a parade on Friday and a 2:00 pm kickoff on Saturday for the big game.

For more UAB Homecoming information, you can click here.