Homecoming to look different thanks to COVID-19

Published 11:38 am Tuesday, September 15, 2020

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It’s fall and that means high school homecomings can’t be far away.

Both T.R. Miller and W.S. Neal High Schools will be hosting annual homecoming events, but the traditional activities associated with the day-long affair, may look different this year thanks to COVID-19.

W.S. Neal’s homecoming will be Oct. 2. T.R. Miller will hold homecoming on Oct. 9.

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Organizers at W.S. Neal High School have made some tough decisions this year canceling many of the activities typically associated with the week-long event.

Austin Rogers, Student Council sponsor, said many of the events typically seen during a W.S. Neal Homecoming simply aren’t going to happen.

“We will not be having a parade this year,” Rogers said. “There are some disappointed people because of this, but this is what we need to do this year. We will not be hosting any of the alumni activities on our campus this year.”

The school typically holds an alumni tea and allows returning alumni to tour the schools, both of which will not be done for the 2020 Homecoming.

“We will be holding a Powder Puff football game in our stadium on Thursday night beginning at 5 p.m.,” Rogers said. “There is a charge for that be it will be followed by a Pep Rally and band performance beginning at 7 p.m. free of charge.”

Lisa Atkinson, one of the organizers for T.R. Miller homecoming activities, said one part of the day that has become part of the tradition will not take place.

“We will not host an alumni tea or have school tours this year,” Atkinson said. “We understand that COVID-19 conditions are a concern, and our homecoming committee has worked tirelessly to put into place many provisions to ensure the safety of our alumni, students, faculty and staff during the homecoming festivities on our campus.”

Rogers said the customary ceremonies announcing the homecoming court and queen will take place as usual.

“We will begin our pre-game ceremonies at 6:30 p.m. on game day,” Rogers said. “At that time we will present our homecoming queen and her court. The game will kick-off at 7 p.m. following the ceremony.”

W.S. Neal officials are asking that everyone practice social distancing and wear a mask when being within six feet of anyone not in their household. The stadium will only be open to 50 percent of the usual capacity. Football tickets will be on sale the week of the game in the front office until 2 p.m. each day and until 1 p.m. on game day.

W.S. Neal High School will observe homecoming on Friday, October 2 hosting St. Michael.

T.R. Miller High School will observe homecoming on Friday, October 9. Hosting Hillcrest of Evergreen