The Ramblin’ Wreck Parade first originated with the Old Ford Race in 1929 and 1930. The Old Ford Race ran from Atlanta to Athens, a 70 mile sprint that marked one of the few times Tech students hurried into Athens. The Technique sponsored the first race in memoriam of Dean Ford’s junked “Flying Flivver,” which was the forerunner of the Ramblin’ Reck. However, in 1932, the administration deemed the Old Ford Race to be unsafe. This led Georgia Tech students to create the Ramblin’ Wreck Parade in order to keep the tradition alive.
The Wreck Parade is held the Saturday morning of Homecoming and is the last event before the homecoming football game. The Ramblin’ Reck leads the parade that begins at McCamish Pavilion and ends at the intersection of Ferst and Fowler. The Wreck Parade originally consisted of two vehicle categories: Fixed Bodies and Classic Cars. Since 1932, the Wreck Parade has been an annual tradition, with the exception of 1942 and 1943, due to the gas shortages during World War II. In 1944, the parade was renewed and with it, a new category of vehicles was created: contraptions. Contraptions have to be human powered and is by far the most interesting and favorite among students. It challenges their engineering ability and tests their creativity. Nowadays, students can enter any of the three categories, so expect to see lots of classic cars, unbelievable fixed bodies, and interesting, self-powered contraptions designed by fellow Tech students.