Homecoming Parade 2019

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By LORALIE BERCEL

 

The large band marching through the streets, chilly sweater weather, floats upon floats for miles: it’s the Bellefonte Homecoming parade.

Every year, students, parents, and community members participate in the annual Homecoming Parade the Thursday before the Homecoming football game. Each grade level is challenged to design the most intricate float to be judged  along the parade route in front of the courthouse on October 3. This year, the theme was “Fairy Tales.”

With many good fairy tale options,  the seniors chose “Aladdin,” the juniors chose “Snow White,” the sophomores took on “The Little Mermaid,” and the freshmen picked, “Shrek.” Some classes had months through the summer, while others had a few weeks to work on their floats, but the students’ hard work did not go unnoticed.  

The Senior Class’ first place did not come without hard work.

The Class Cabinet was working on the float weeks before the parade and put in countless hours. We held large group workshops, averaging four hours every weekend in which attendees numbered anywhere from three to ten. Every idea was conceived within a student’s mind and the building and painting was accomplished with student hands,” Senior Class President Natalie Book said.

Some classes did face issues along the way, with a lot of problems stemming from the short amount of time students had to complete their floats.

“At first, we disagreed on a theme. Though after compromising and voting on one, we came together to accomplish our goal. Other than that, there were just general disagreements we tried our best to overcome,” Freshman Class Vice President Cecillia Mazzocco said.

The Freshman Class placed second in the competition.

Cooperation amongst students is arguably the most important part of planning a float. Although the Junior Class placed third, they were successful with cooperating with one another. 

“We worked really hard as a group on it and met almost every weekend for the month leading up to the parade. Everyone in our cabinet worked really well together and we had a great time during the parade,” Junior Class President Nathan Taylor said.

Sophomore Class President Dominic Nelson believes that his class place appropriately, considering the amount of time they put into the float. 

“Throughout the duration of the summer, there was no form of work session instituted, leaving us with minimal work time. I don’t truly believe anything else hindered our efforts in constructing the float; our work sessions, though, were only about two hours long, leaving us with a strict period of time to work with,”  Dominic Nelson said. 

Regardless of earning last place, Dominic’s outlook still remains positive.

“Although we got last place, I truly am content with how everything turned out: the positive morale, simplicity, and persevering work ethic that emanated from my peers and the float itself is all I would’ve asked for,” Dominic said.

Another highlight from the parade is when BAHS alumni return.

Alumni cheerleader from the Class of 1992, Renae Eckley, looked forward to returning to participate in the parade and to hearing the BHS “Fight Song” from the Marching Band.

“I’ve always loved the atmosphere, and it’s something that always stays with you…even as an adult. It was fun to relive it for a night,” Mrs. Eckley said.

She said one of the hardest parts of coming back was “picking up new cheers on a moment’s notice.”

Amidst the stressful moments of last-minute float building and the cheers from all of the participating sports teams, the Homecoming parade continues to stand as a loved tradition of the town, and there’s one thing keeping that tradition alive: the students.

“The class of 2020 has set a new bar of expectation in terms of effort that I hope upcoming classes continue to reach both for the enjoyment of the community, and the students involved,” Natalie said.