Prescott-area homecomings bring students, school together
Bonfires, football, dances and pep assemblies – they all work to bring the student body together to celebrate who they are and generate school spirit for the upcoming year.
At Prescott High School (PHS), the theme of this year’s homecoming events is “The Happiest Place on Earth,” which includes the theme of the dance: “Another Cinderella Story.” Homecoming started Tuesday, Sept. 27, and ends with Friday’s football game against Mohave High School.
The 31-member PHS student council is the “real creative body” behind homecoming, said student council advisor Dan Tyler.
“I’m here to help organize and put out fires,” he joked, “but they are in charge.”
Tyler said homecoming began as a celebration of a school’s football team’s return to its home campus after away games. Today, he sees it more as a diverse event that encompasses all sports, all clubs, all students, and the community.
On Tuesday, the student body showed the Disney movie, Monsters University, on the football field; Lilo and Stitch Day (wear Hawaiian/tropical clothes) Wednesday, along with Homecoming Dance; Incredibles Day (wear superhero attire), the downtown parade and bonfire, Thursday; and Friday’s Beauty and the Badger Day (wear school colors), a pep assembly and football game. Homecoming Queen and King are crowned during halftime.
Council President Emma Kelley said this is the second year the dance takes place on Wednesday and off campus at the Holiday Courtyard on Montezuma. She expects about 500 students will attend.
Finding a place in Prescott that accommodates 500-600 people, plus parking, figured in the move to downtown, Tyler said. And having the dance on Wednesday means students are home around 10 p.m. instead of midnight when dances took place after the football game.
Student Council Vice President Heather Sands said parents and the community also have an opportunity to see students dressed up as they walk to the venue. Tyler estimates costs for the four-day homecoming week events total about $3,000.
Community members are invited to the homecoming parade around the courthouse plaza that begins at 6 p.m. complete with numerous floats created by a variety of clubs. Immediately following at Mile High Middle School, the bonfire takes place with “throwback” music from the early 2000s.
In Prescott Valley, Bradshaw Mountain High School (BMHS) also hosts its homecoming events this week beginning with the Dodgeball Tournament on Monday, which also was Smarties Day (dress like a nerd).
Bradshaw’s theme, “Candyland,” provides an opportunity to celebrate sweets. Tuesday was Baby Ruth Day (dress in a favorite sports jersey); Wednesday is Starburst Day (dress in class colors); Thursday, Payday (dress in career or college apparel); and Friday is Gummy Bears (dress in Bradshaw colors).
Each day also has an activity or event, said Student Council Advisor Mike Tannehill. Tuesday’s Bean Bag Benefit, for instance, raised money for a staff member who has incurred medical bills. The girls’ Powder Puff game, 6 p.m., and bonfire, 7 p.m., take place Wednesday. Thursday the administration will take on the winners of Monday’s Dodgeball Tournament.
The football game against the Mingus Marauders starts at 7 p.m. Friday. The Homecoming Dance is Saturday at Glassford Hill Middle School. Tannehill said last year’s dance at the East Campus outgrew the space. GHMS should accommodate more than 500 students.
Council President Katherine Brannan estimated their budget at about $1,000, with the most expensive cost being the DJ.
Brannan said homecoming is all about coming together as a school.
“A lot of us meet new people. It’s about coming back to school, and the start of the year,” she said.