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Thrill of Homecoming attracts alumni

For campus students, Homecoming represents the culmination of weeks of toil. Many forget the significance the night holds for those students who have already graduated. For them, Homecoming is not just a chance to visit home; it is a time to reminisce with friends and teachers about days gone by.

Many alumni see Homecoming as a chance to see old friends and say hello to people they have not seen since graduation.

“I enjoy the chance I get at Homecoming to see people that I haven’t seen in awhile,” Shanda [Kemp] Posthumus, ’02, said. “I still remember being on the float my senior year and how much fun that was.”

Posthumus helped with her class float her last three years of high school. Her most memorable float experience took place during her senior year when she got to ride on the float.

“We were doing the Beverly Hillbillies,” Posthumus said. “We had a bubbling oil thing, and it malfunctioned and oil shot out onto the ground. I still laugh about that!”

The floats are one of the things about Homecoming that many alumni remember fondly.

“I remember spending hours trying to build something for our float and then having it not turn out so good.” Shawn Cason, ’04, said. “It is fun to come back and see what the classes have done with their floats.”

The floats are not the only treasured component of Homecoming. The coronation of the queen and king and the tradition of the marching band leading the floats out onto the track are anticipated by both students and alumni.

“I really enjoyed my time marching with the band during high school,” Cason said. “It will be fun to come back and see what they do this year.”

Others are curious to see what the band has been up to. Ray Johnson, retired band director, returns to Homecoming every year to see what new things the band has done since he last saw them.

“I look forward to seeing what the band is going to do,” Johnson said. “I’m always rooting for the band.”

Johnson also enjoys seeing the familiar faces of the students he once taught.

“I love seeing people I recognize,” Johnson said. “It is great to see former students returning to the game with their new families.”

Alumni across the valley have similar emotions toward their school’s Homecomings. Jennifer Blate, a member of the Yosemite High School class of ’02, remembers the days she spent on the Associated Student Body (ASB) team preparing for Homecoming.

When she came back for her first Homecoming as an alumna, she began to appreciate the effort put out by students to make Homecoming special for alumni.

“Homecoming is a way to recreate high school memories with friends and teachers,” Blate said. “It is a way to find out what others have been up to and what has been accomplished.”

Some enjoy Homecoming because of the amount of spirit exhibited by students that is not always present at regular football games.

“I love all the school spirit at Homecoming,” Stacy [Drew] Gagliardi, ’97, said. “Everyone is into the game and so many people come.”

Gagliardi enjoys coming back and seeing the halftime festivities.

“I was really involved in helping with Homecoming when I was in high school,” Gagliardi said. “I helped with the floats, sang the national anthem with the ensemble and marched with the band. I think I did just about everything except play football, so it’s great to come back and see what those groups are doing now.”

This year, Homecoming will be held at Clark Intermediate in Clovis on Oct. 22. The varsity game will begin at 7:30 P.M.

For more information about Homecoming activities, contact Josh Tosland at [email protected]. For information about the football team, contact Jon Hall at [email protected].

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    Logan RoodApr 1, 2011 at 12:01 am

    Ashley should be in band again. She was so good.