KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Tennessee‘s annual homecoming parade brought thousands of Volunteers from across the nation to campus on Friday.

Spectators come from all over. “I live in Minnesota and there was a crew of us that drove down,” said Winnie Marton.

Parade onlooker of all ages and walks of life came together on Rocky Top to celebrate the volunteer spirit.

“We love the Vols through every season so up and down and through all the different sports,” Brittany Williams said. “We’re definitely ‘Vol for life y’all.”

“The spirit has been crazy this year with our winning streak,” said senior Keaundra Allen from Chattanooga. “It’s been absolutely insane. Everyone is so happy now and it’s really good to see us win.”

“It’s a long time coming,” UT alumnus Brian Coker said. “Many years hoped for, dangerously close.

As many celebrated the accomplishments on the gridiron, others explained what it means to be a part of the Vol family.

“I like to be a part of everything and the school spirit has just been like bigger than I could have ever imagined,” UT freshman and Charleston, South Carolina native Evey Hadden said. “I like to be a part of everything and the school spirit has just been like bigger than I could have ever imagined.”

“Yeah, it’s definitely fun to see like it doesn’t end after college,” freshman Avery Parsons said. “All these parents coming back for parents’ weekend, people with young kids, it’s so exciting.”

“Everything here is amped up and you want to go, you want to have fun,” freshmen Paige Bedworth said. “You want to be included with like everything we do. It’s just really nice to get out be a part of something.”

“The volunteer spirit, it’s all about baring the torch and everything,” said junior Callie Barthelemy from New Jersey. “We’re really good at football now, which is absolutely amazing but these past 15 years, even if we weren’t the greatest, 102,000 seats in the stadium, it’s still sold out every time. Which shows what it means to be a volunteers. It doesn’t matter if we’re winning or losing, it really just is about being in that big orange family and it’s something really special.”

Many of the floats in the parade paid homage to Smokey X as he is retiring at the end of the football season.

The Vols kick off their homecoming football game against the UT Martin Skyhawks at noon Saturday. The game will be aired on SEC Network.