On the morning of Monday, September 19, students filed into the gym and clumped together in the stands. The sounds of students chattering filled the room, and the homecoming committee waited behind the scenes with the members of the homecoming court. Eventually, a hush fell over the crowd as the homecoming co-chairs entered the floor. Sarah Marnin, Samantha Bortle, and Danielle Sitzman introduced the upcoming circus-themed activities of the week.
The Homecoming committee ran into the gym decked out in example outfits for the dress-up days and then the time that everyone was waiting for finally came: the homecoming court was introduced. The lucky twelve galloped, rolled, and cartwheeled onto the floor and took their seats. The kick-off committee ran through a list of truth or dare questions, and we were given quite a show as we watched them show off dance moves, serenade friends, and try out pick-up lines on freshmen. However, after an hour, the assembly was done and students returned to their classes. In the evening, Ames families and students gathered downtown to watch the Homecoming parade.
“I was most excited for the parade,” said Bortle. “It started off Homecoming week in a fun way, and everyone was super excited for it.”
Ames High students on floats mingled with the band, and the Homecoming court rode past in their convertibles. Candy was showered onto the crowd, and cries rose from the crowd when they saw their friends or relatives pass. After the parade, students gathered at Bandshell to dance to modern tunes.
“We were relieved once the parade was over, because it was the hardest event to plan,” said Bortle.
Tuesday brought with it a multitude of ‘twins’ filling the school with students dressed in the same way as their friends. The day went by relatively calmly until that evening when the girls volleyball team played a spectacular game and the audience helped white-out the gym with their ‘Play2Win’ shirts.
“I think there were great turnouts for everything,” said Bortle. “A lot of people came out… and supported the volleyball game.”
That night, upperclassmen made their way to school, toilet paper in hand. They lobbed it throughout the courtyard and the front of the school in an effort to create as glorious of a mess as they possibly could. In the morning, students were welcomed with the sight of white strands of paper floating about the grounds. On Wednesday, teachers and students dressed as various people and animals from the circus for the theme day. Before school, they gathered in the cafeteria for the annual pancake breakfast, where the Homecoming committee was serving up fluffy flapjacks. Thursday was homecoming t-shirt day, and the school was filled with red-shirted students. Though it was rather chilly, people met at Bandshell that night to watch A Bugâs Life with their peers. Friday was an exciting day, with students wearing game day shirts crowding into the gym for the morning coronation assembly. The Homecoming court was decked out in their finest garb while they walked through the balloon arch and down the aisle to the front stage, where they took their seats to wait to hear who was Homecoming royalty.
The tension built in the room as the twelve entered, until the time finally came: who would win? Princess Molly Isebrands, Prince Adam Maher, Queen Martha Ryan, and King Phillip Shaw were the lucky four nominated by the student body. After hearing the winners, seniors gathered on the gym floor to watch the wake-up video. That night, students filled the stadium to cheer on the Little Cyclones to a victory at the Homecoming Game. The band performed spectacularly during halftime as they played Raise Your Glass by Pink and The Legend of Zelda from the popular video game. Senior Dillan Glock dressed as Link from Zelda and junior Sadie Taylor dressed as Pink, which garnered a multitude of cheers from the crowd. It was a great game and the football team played well, though we ended up losing to Fort Dodge. Saturday was the day of the Homecoming dance. Students spent all day hanging out with friends, gussying up, and going out to dinner. Upwards of 900 students filled the gym from eight to midnight, dancing to the music DJs Scott MacDonald and Max Peterson played. Refreshments -cough cough water- were provided in the balcony, as were tables for students to sit at to take a rest.
All in all, Homecoming week was a huge success and the students and teachers had a ton of fun. Participation was key, and the school came through. The co-chairs did a great job planning the events and figuring out the small details.
“We started planning what we wanted Homecoming to be like,” said Bortle. “It ended up just how we wanted it!”