St. Thomas Aquinas keeps homecoming traditions alive despite COVID-19 pandemic

Saint Thomas Aquinas homecoming
Posted at 3:47 PM, Oct 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-09 18:25:45-04

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — Saint Thomas Aquinas High School in Overland Park did everything it could to keep homecoming traditions alive despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Our school theme this year is, 'We’ll find a way,'" Saints Spirit Shop Director Serena Price said.

With a few tweaks, Aquinas' homecoming pep rally Friday took place at the football stadium ahead of the game.

“I think the students like to see that we’re still trying to make it as normal as possible," Student Council Executive President Ben Ferguson said.

Typically, the event would be held inside the Saints' gymnasium, but it was moved outside to allow for proper social distancing.

All students were required to wear a mask, even those performing in the pep rally.

Among the traditions for Aquinas' homecoming are the annual class skits, which took place during the pep rally along with the crowning of the homecoming king and queen.

“We’re making the best out of it," Ferguson said. "That’s the best thing you can do."

While there is no homecoming dance and not all students can attend the football game due to capacity limitations, several Aquinas students said they were happy to celebrate in some form or fashion.

"With COVID-19, I think we've set our expectations pretty low, so the fact that we get to do this is above and beyond," Gabby Mazzarese, an Aquinas student, said. "This is more than we could ask for. Just be together is our goal, so, if we achieve that, that's what we want."

The school recently transitioned to in-person learning. A spokesperson for the school said Aquinas is doing all it can to keep kids safe, but also trying to balance finding ways like Friday's pep rally to keep them engaged.