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Graduation: Parkview students brave the heat to walk the stage

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Nick Crow
June 1, 2014

ORFORDVILLE--A chance of storms Sunday chased the Parkview High School graduation indoors.

The move didn't make things any cooler for students as they and many in the audience used graduation programs as makeshift fans. Humidity hovered over 50 percent for much of the day, making the school's gymnasium warm, to say the least.

"We voted on it to be outside, but we changed it because of the chance of rain," graduate Ashley Case said as she fanned herself. "It's humid no matter where we are."

Students didn't let the temperature affect their enjoyment of the ceremony. The 63 graduates snapped photos, hugged one another and paced excitedly waiting for their chances to cross the stage.

Black and blue

Parkview's tradition of girl graduates wearing blue gowns with white trim while the boys wear black gowns with blue trim has been around for ages, attendees said. The real question is, how did it start? No one at Sunday's ceremony seemed to know.

"I don't know who chooses that," said Kate Weston, teacher at Parkview and senior adviser. "I have no idea why they do that, but it's been that way for years."

A quick straw poll of graduating students in the hall echoed that response.

"It's not new. I just don't know where it started," Weston said.

Surreal

Class President Lexie Gianitsos told classmates to embrace the "surreal" moment as Sunday marked the end of an era.

"Celebrate it..." Gianitsos said. "It's an afternoon to say goodbye."

Mistakes

Co-valedictorian Robyn Klitzman advised students to not be afraid of making mistakes because they can lead to lessons.

"We all make mistakes," Klitzman said. "It's not the mistakes I regret. Minor setbacks can be overcome and learned from."

Now is the time to make mistakes, and graduates should never fear failure, Klitzman said.

"What was the point of high school," Klitzman said. "The answer is to prepare you for your future."

Leaving a mark

"All of us can do great things," co-valedictorian Aleah Warden said. "The Class of 2014 has a vast amount of potential."

What's important is for graduates to change things they believe need changing, Warden said.

"Endings are inevitable," salutatorian Sara Kearns said. "The future is exciting, but today is for celebrating. Today, we remember the day we got here. As a group, we've accomplished a lot."

Kearns said all students had their own experiences in high school and made their own memories. But what will stick with them is the life skills they learned, she said.

"When you give all you have, there is no way you will be disappointed with the outcome," Kearns said.



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