Tuesday, June 25, 2024

A new ‘tradition’ is coming to Jamestown High School

Jamestown High School (Courtesy Google Maps)
Jamestown High School (Courtesy Google Maps)

Homecoming at Jamestown High School will be a little different this year.

“We were looking for a place where the kids have a little connection to, where they spend time and make memories,” said Brendan Berry, adviser for the school’s Student Council Association. “A parade is something they’ll remember into adulthood.”

In an attempt to find ways to make seniors feel more connected to the school, Jamestown’s principal, Howard Townsend, did a survey of students to see what students felt they would remember most about their experience in their final year, Berry said.

The survey revealed that most seniors remember the tradition of running around the building on the morning of the homecoming game, he said. Berry said each year the school sections off an area where the seniors get to roam for a few minutes in the morning of homecoming.

“Hearing that, it felt like such a small thing and we wanted to create something they would remember,” Berry said.

This year, the school’s SCA has planned a new tradition for students: a homecoming parade.

The parade will take place in New Town at 5 p.m. on Oct. 3. Students from various organizations will get to represent their school in a location where, Berry said he feels, they already spend a lot of time socializing on the weekends.

“It seems like people do remember their school parades,” he said. “Anyone that comes from a small town where they do these parades, it is one event that you can state with pride that you took part in.”

While this first year Berry expects to be a slow-starter, simply with students with banners and posters, Berry said he hopes the tradition will eventually come to include building floats and drawing in larger crowds each year.

One of the aspects of a parade that makes it such an appealing concept, he said, is that it gets students who might not be interested in homecoming because of the sporting aspect to take part in a school pride activity.

“No matter what school you go to, kids are always excited about largest sports,” he said. “But if you’re not on one of these big teams, this is one way to partake yourself.”

For example, Berry said one of the school’s groups, the Bow Tie Club — members wear bow ties every Wednesday — was one of the first groups to be interested. Berry said the club’s faculty sponsor, John Leone, is a huge proponent of the parade.

While the concept of homecoming typically focuses around a school’s football game, a parade allows students to represent all activities they’re proud of and helps them to become interested in sports as well, Berrry said.

“It’s all about trying to build some kind of excitement,” he said. “Because there is some room to go about getting our kids excited about some of our sports. Anything can help.”

The parade is set to be led in two segments, first by the school’s dance team. To minimize any impact on surrounding businesses, the parade’s path is currently set to go down Main Street in New Town toward the gazebo and then move to the New Town Regal Cinemas 12 and turn right at Buffalo Wild Wings. 

While there is still planning that has to happen with the student groups, Berry said he hopes this will be the first of a long-standing tradition at Jamestown.

Alexa Doiron
Alexa Doironhttp://wydaily.com
Alexa Doiron is a multimedia reporter for WYDaily. She graduated from Roanoke College and is currently working on a master’s degree in English at Virginia Commonwealth University. Alexa was born and raised in Williamsburg and enjoys writing stories about local flair. She began her career in journalism at the Warhill High School newspaper and, eight years later, still loves it. After working as a news editor in Blacksburg, Va., Alexa missed Williamsburg and decided to come back home. In her free time, she enjoys reading Jane Austen and playing with her puppy, Poe. Alexa can be reached at alexa@localvoicemedia.com.

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