COVID forces students to take Homecoming into their own hands

Awtry Massa, Staff Writer


Tradition is one of the three pillars that staff and students at Rochester High School live by. For many students, Homecoming is a huge tradition that students look forward to every year. However, this year with COVID, there are no plans in sight for a traditional Homecoming.

So, students took it upon themselves to have an At-home Homecoming!

Students dressed up, did their hair and makeup, and spent time with their friends.

Junior Holly McDonald hosted an At-home Homecoming with about 15 friends on Saturday, Sep. 26.

“I have always been a huge fan of school dances. I love dressing up and school dances are one of the opportunities I get to do so, along with dancing with my friends,” McDonald said. “When it was announced that school would be starting remotely, I immediately wanted to plan something with my friends. I had the idea for months and I knew that since my friends and I weren’t seeing each other everyday, it was the perfect chance to see each other again and also try to recreate a normal event.”

McDonald and her friends wanted the feel and experience of their junior year Homecoming, but more casual and laid back. The group danced outside in the backyard in their pajamas, wearing glow sticks around their necks, and everyone got to pick their own playlist.

“The music was really fun since we got to request songs! Most of them were older so we all knew them all which made it super enjoyable,” junior Evie Ansari said.

The group also catered the event.

“We catered pizza, pasta and salad from a pizza place. Everyone brought desserts,” junior Dru Haney said.

With COVID-19’s presence, The group kept their Homecoming safe by checking for symptoms, maintaining social distancing, as well as taking pictures, eating, and dancing outside. Rochester High School will begin hybrid learning Oct. 19, but there will still be protocols in place for the safety of students and staff.

“We had people checking for symptoms and fevers the two weeks before and most of us had been tested because of various sports. We were 6 feet apart for the majority of the night and people who were concerned wore masks. Pictures were done really quick,” Haney said.

McDoanld and her friends are just a few of the many people who have taken Homecoming into their own hands this year. Despite the consequences this pandemic has had on high school social life, students have been able to find ways to enjoy a tradition like this one.

“Homecoming is an experience that I don’t want to miss out on, and if the school isn’t able to have it this fall I figured I would take it into my own hands and plan it myself,” McDonald said.