Pajamarino is the tradition of escorting returning alumni from the train station to the homecoming bonfire while wearing pajamas the night before the homecoming game. It is currently organized by the Cal Aggie Alumni Association. The 100th Annual Pajamarino will be held Friday, October 5, 2012, at 5:45p.m, and all are welcomed to attend. There haven't actually been 99 Pajamarino events yet, because the campus was closed during World War II. That cake is a lie.
Every year, Pajamarino takes place the Friday before the Homecoming game. The night usually starts at 6pm, with people arriving early at around 5:50pm, at the Amtrak train station. In the past there has been free food, free entertainment, prizes, and photos with Gunrock, the UC Davis mascot. Performances have included the Lounge Lizards and David Ronconi. SAA also hosts a pie eating contest, pajama contest, and pajama parade. The California Aggie Marching Band-uh will leave the ARC after their Friday evening rehearsal, playing and winding through campus and downtown until they get to the train station at around 6:50pm. They join the UCD Spirit Squad in performing until the train arrives. Then the band heads off toward the bonfire, lead by the UCD firetruck, sometimes making detours along the way, like through campus buildings or the 24 hour reading room. Once at the bonfire, Aggie Pack leads the opening ceremonies at 8pm. The bonfire is lit and monitored by the UC Davis Fire Department. Performances by the Band-uh, UCD Dance Team, and football team go into the night. Pajamas are no longer commonly worn by the students, but should be worn in order to keep with tradition. However, most attendees wear warm street clothes, and sections of the band wear costumes or dress to a theme.
Pajamarino began in 1912, when it was known as the "pajama rally". Back then it was an informal, unsanctioned event. Students would sneak out of their dorms to meet returning alumni at the train station. AllisonEriksen remembers reading somewhere that the goal was to obtain alcohol from the alumni, but she can no longer find her source. Verification would be appreciated.
By 1916, the Pajamarino Rally was officially a homecoming weekend kick-off event. Students marched to the train station in their pj's to welcome alumni and escort them to campus. The homecoming bonfire was built by the freshmen class. After the bonfire, a dance was held and prizes were awarded for the most original pajamas. Eventually the event became tradition. The California Aggie Marching Band-uh became regular performers, and milk and cookies were provided for the alums.