Homecoming: Parades, bonfires, and a big football game
Glenn and Cathy Howden came to the Prescott High School Homecoming parade at the courthouse plaza Wednesday night to support their daughter Kelsie, a senior who plays clarinet in the Pride of Prescott Marching Band, but said they wouldn't be at the bonfire.
"That's for the kids," Cathy said.
Wrapped up in blankets in the chilly weather, Sophia Voelkel and Taylor Crain, both freshmen, said this was their first time at the parade, and they were looking forward to the bonfire at Prescott Mile High Middle School afterward to see their friends and keep warm.
Susanne Stock said she was there to support her daughter, Lauren Stock, who performs in the band, and gathered with a number of other band booster parents who are working on a fundraiser for the band to perform in Prague, Vienna and other European cities in 2013.
"It's a tradition for us. We've been meeting our friends here for the parade since eighth grade," said Aly Janosko, a junior.
Rylan Medlin, a sixth-grader at Mile High, read a book under a tree at the courthouse while waiting for the parade to begin. He was there to see his sister, who is a cheerleader at the high school.
"We're here to show school spirit as part of Homecoming," said Kaylee Warne, a PHS sophomore.
The Pride of Prescott Marching Band kicked off the parade playing the school's fight song, followed by cheerleaders and the pom line, and the Air Force Junior ROTC. Student council members threw candy to the crowd from their float with the Badger mascot boxing the Barry Goldwater High School Bulldog.
Students dressed as ancient Greeks and Romans in togas rode on the senior float, while juniors posed as tourists on a bus and took photos of the crowd from their float. Sophomores dressed in Western gear, and their float featured a saguaro skeleton and hay bales. Freshmen dressed in poodle skirts and jeans and T-shirts danced in their 1950s diner float.
Members of the National Honor Society in togas walked behind a banner that read "NHS - as close to Greek as you can get," followed by members of the Prescott High School talent show, and the Gay and Straight Alliance, which marched behind their rainbow banner. Paintball club members in full gear came next, and Homecoming royalty candidates waved to the crowd from their cars.
Drama club members dressed in skeleton T-shirts danced to Michael Jackson's "Thriller," a number that will lead off their show opening Halloween Day at the Ruth Street Theater, said Demi Corkery, a sophomore.
When the football team rode by on Prescott Fire Engine, the crowd roared.
Torrence Dunham, a senior who is editor of the PHS newspaper, said he was there to support the football team, which hosts Goldwater this Friday night at Bill Shepard Field. Kickoff is 7 p.m.
"I'm looking forward to the game Friday night," said Joe McCarty, a junior on the football team.
"The spirit of the week brings the school together," added Pat Brewer, a senior on the football team.
Afterward, people headed to Prescott Mile High Middle School for the bonfire, where a model of a bulldog head, the opposing team's mascot, was burned in a fire lit, monitored and later put out by Prescott firefighters. At the bonfire, Air Force Junior ROTC members James Seal, a junior, and John Connelly, a senior, said they were most looking forward to the dance after the game on Friday.
Albert and Clara Guzman said they've been coming to the parade and bonfire for the past nine years, since their sons Albert and Anthony both played football for PHS, and their daughter Adriana, a junior, is a cheerleader there now.
"It's a big event and brings the community together," Clara said.