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The Saratoga Falcon

The Saratoga Falcon

The Saratoga Falcon

Alumni reminisce on impact of homecoming

Each year in late September or early October, we devote one week to celebrating our Falcon pride. Some scoff at the traditions while others embrace them; nonetheless, this week has an impact on our school: It is Homecoming.

Homecoming is a time-honored tradition at SHS, just as it is at most other high schools across the nation. And although the majority of students will probably forget in a few years who won quad day and who was the Homecoming queen, Homecoming leaves a lasting impact on many students and on the school as a whole.

Class of 1981 alumna Tina Johnson remembers her years at SHS fondly. Now the parent of junior Mary Johnson, she remembers how Homecoming impacted her time as a student.

“Homecoming was huge,” Johnson said. “I’m sure I could find a few people that said they didn’t participate in the festivities, but for the most part it was an all-inclusive event.”

Johnson said the Homecoming traditions helped to increase Falcon pride and togetherness.

“One of the many things that Homecoming did—and I believe still does—was to create unity both within each class and for the school as a whole,” Johnson said.

Alumna Julie Angell, class of ‘80, agrees that Homecoming helped classes join together.

“I loved the way our class had to band together to create something and compete against the other classes,” Angell said. “It definitely brought us together as a class and got us excited about being a Falcon!”

Many Homecoming traditions that once brought the school together live on today.

“Voting for the Homecoming court happened the week prior to Homecoming,” said Johnson.

“Lunchtime included games, skits [and] activities similar to the performances that occur now.”

Many graduates remember the Homecoming football game being an important experience.

“I love the Homecoming game,” Johnson said. “It was so special every year—such magic. Halftime was devoted entirely to the student body and the Homecoming court. As is still done, the Homecoming court was paraded around the field in special cars and dropped off on the far side of the field.”

1973 alumna Laura Fairchild also agrees that the Homecoming game was a highlight.

“The football game was a big deal because that’s when the alumni returned to their old alma mater,” said Fairchild. “It was a chance to see our old friends who had moved on to college.”

All of these Homecoming traditions impacted the school positively, Angell said.

“[Homecoming] helped instill a sense of school pride and class pride in all of us who participated,” Angell said. “You felt proud saying you were a Falcon.”

As a parent now, Johnson feels that Homecoming is more important than ever.

“Homecoming happens at the beginning of the school year; it is one of the events that sets the tone for the entire year. At a school like SHS where the academic pressures are enormous, I, for one, am a parent that believes Homecoming is of utmost importance.”

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