By Eliza Brown
This year, homecoming and spirit week looked very different from previous years. Though the pandemic has made some events impossible to do safely this year, Mr. Maury, Nantucket Public School’s Athletic Director, and Mrs. Bartlett, Testing Coordinator and Innovation Pathways Coordinator, worked hard to make it as fun and interactive as possible for students. Even with social distancing regulations, there were many activities available to participate in, including the traditional spirit week. Students in all cohorts could join in on the fun by wearing clothing according to the daily theme, even from their own home by turning on their camera! The week included comfy day, decades day, color day, tropical day, and whaler pride day. The senior class won with the most points for the spirit days.
Another classic homecoming activity that took place was float decorating. This event was slightly altered for safety, but it was still very fun and engaging. The senior class chose the theme “2020”, the junior class chose the theme “Christmas”, the sophomores had a tropical theme, and the freshman had an outer space theme. Students worked together to decorate the floats. It is important to mention that proper safety precautions were taken the whole time. Everyone wore a mask at all times and social distancing was enforced. To ensure the safety of the students this year, there was no float parade or hallway decorating contest, but the events that did take place were a huge success. Through deliberate planning and safety precautions, many annual traditions occured this year that otherwise would not have taken place.
There were more homecoming events this year, including sports. There were many “Blue and White” homecoming games which, while they may have been different than other years, were still able to occur, albeit with reductions in spectators due to Covid regulations. Fortunately, the senior recognition events were saved, and this important tradition occurred. Senior recognition showcases each of the student athletes and their hard work and dedication. The final tradition that happened was the Homecoming Court. On November 13th, students voted for the Homecoming Court and the results were as follows: Maisie Cocker, Camie Strojny, Kamoy Barnett, Reese Burns, Ruby Dupont, Sydney King, William Halik, Gavin Pekarcik, Malique Bodden, Christian Mack, Jack Gammons, and Grant Beebe. On November 17th, the students voted for Homecoming King and Queen. The 2020 Homecoming King and Queen were announced as Malique Bodden and Kamoy Barnett, respectively.
Finally, there were many new activities organized this year to increase student participation by offering new activities that could be done at home. All activities helped to earn points for the student’s class. The first of these activities was a video contest, where students could send in videos about how the pandemic has affected their lives. It gave students the opportunity to share their personal experiences. There was also the yard, door, or window decorating contest. This was similar to the hallway decorating of previous years, except students could decorate a section of their own home and submit a picture of it. Additionally, there was a completely different type of activity, the sticker contest, where students designed a sticker using the “W” for Whaler pride, which provided an opportunity for artists to showcase their talents. The final new activities were selfie contests, which there were three of.
Ultimately, though covid certainly put a damper on the Homecoming festivities, they were still able to occur.