First Senior Hoop Roll

The senior hoop roll is one of Wheaton College’s most familiar and longstanding traditions. Based on a popular children’s game of the nineteenth century, Wheaton’s event is reserved for graduating seniors on Class Day, and dates back to 1912.

In early years, graduates would dress up in their gowns and caps, which had been decorated by their sophomore “little sisters,” and chase hoops across campus. Since 1923, the race has begun at the library steps and the finished at the statue of Hebe. Traditionally, the winner of the race is proclaimed “the class bride.” If a student was already married, she ran with a baby carriage and was predicted to have the first class baby.

Since coeducation, the Hoop Roll has been adapted to include both men and women, and the winner will supposedly be the first in the class to marry.