Stop what you’re doing and think. Reminisce back to a cool fall night—the air seemed to tremble with anticipation. Who would win the football game? Which girl would receive the crown? After a week of school and community celebrations it all boils down to this one night. Girls in sparkling dresses and high heels stroll around the stadium while children decked in red and black sit with parents eating boiled peanuts and sipping cold sodas. Everyone cheers when the Pirates score a touchdown. Everyone applauds when the queen is named. After the game ends high school students rush off to the dance while parents and younger children go home. While the week may be over, memories of the parade and its theatrical floats rewind in people’s minds to the tune of the marching band’s music.
Your homecoming memories may differ from the scene described above, and that’s not a bad thing. Over the years, traditions have changed. Some with no definitive answer as to why, while others were an embracement of modernization. Many remember the most obvious change our homecoming has undergone. In 2003 Appling County transitioned from two homecoming queens to one. Many I spoke with seemed happy about this change, saying it was over-due and the students themselves appreciated the unity it signified. Other changes include moving the parade from Friday afternoon before the football game to Thursday evening and the termination of the community pep rally behind City Hall. Yet, some things have stood the test of time such as themed dress up days for the students and parade floats representing each high school class. No matter what year, the football players always seemed to be “part of the elite untouchables during that time” almost like celebrities and whose goal was to put on a great show for all those coming back home to watch the football game.
Not all classmates stay in Baxley after graduation. Some leave for college while others join the military and still others settle down in neighboring cities or counties. This week is a special time for everyone to gather and relive high school memories. Homecoming literally means returning home. This year as we spend our week dressed in red and black preparing for Friday’s game take time to remember your own high school years and appreciate the history you were a part of. Whether you are a current student or an alumnus from years gone by, Homecoming is a special week for all teachers and students of Appling County High School past and present.