Homecoming Fest to Replace Homecoming Parade

The annual Homecoming parade is officially a thing of the past. This past week, senior class council members and administrators have been working together on developing a new event to celebrate Homecoming. The result: Homecoming Fest.

Homecoming Fest will take place the Friday before homecoming from 3:30-5:30 p.m. “The festival’s main events will include performances from drumline, the Raiderettes and cheerleaders,” according to Student Body President Conor Matthews. “Hopefully we will be able to incorporate the football team into the program so we can have a formal send off and wish them luck for Saturday’s homecoming game,” he said.

Up until this year, a Homecoming parade has preceded the game and dance, but attendance has dwindled each year. Clubs have always participated by designing floats, and the best floats in the competition won a cash prize. Along with floats, the band and Raiderettes would parade around the circle. ““I liked [the parade] because I was in band, but not many people were there to watch,” said sophomore Raiderette and band member Kayla Latten. “If you weren’t in a club, you didn’t go to the parade,” she said. Many people shared Latten’s view that there was nothing for non-participating students to do at the parade.

Principal Michael Griffith helped approve the Fest, hoping to bring the Shaker community into Homecoming festivities. “I thought it was a well thought out, creative idea. It is a way to bring people together — the purpose of Homecoming,” said Griffith, who mentioned that the idea met little to no opposition from administrators.

According to Matthews, Senior Class President Simone Malone, Student Council adviser Amanda Ahrens collaborated with him to develop the idea. Ahrens described Homecoming Fest approval as a “very positive experience.” She liked the idea because in years past, the Friday before Homecoming always encouraged  a color war among classes, but this year, “On Friday we’re one Shaker.”

To enter the Fest, students need only wear their new Homecoming T-shirt, coming out soon. The Thursday prior to homecoming, a class color war will take place, and the following day students are encouraged to wear their Homecoming shirts to school and then the Fest.  The shirt will be inexpensive, and for $20 will be a part of a package that includes a ticket to the dance, and a ticket to the football game.

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