This past Saturday, Sept. 25, Oswego High School students celebrated at an outdoor homecoming after not being able to attend homecoming last year. Homecoming was held outdoors this year as an adaptation to COVID-19 guidelines. Since the dance was outside, the school was able to provide food trucks, along with the traditional DJ experience. With such a new location change, it is important to observe how homecoming went for students and what this means for future homecoming dances.
OHS juniors Lainey Hallick, Trevor Mercil, and Alexander Mathew explained what their homecoming experience was like after not having the opportunity to go to an OHS homecoming dance their sophomore year. Additionally, OHS senior Meredith Hornby portrays what her senior-year homecoming was like.
How was homecoming overall?
Lainey: Homecoming was very fun. I really enjoyed getting back to the “normal” high school year despite the pandemic that took this away last year.
Trevor: Homecoming was great hanging out with friends, but the dance was a bit disappointing.
Alex: Homecoming was great and well put together.
What was homecoming like for you, specifically?
Meredith: At the beginning of the night, everyone was a bit awkward, but after a while, we all started to have more fun.
Lainey: I got to take pictures with my closest friends and then dance with everyone, which was stress relieving and very fun. Homecoming was a nice break from school and everything else corresponding with the pandemic.
What effect did an outdoor homecoming have on socializing?
Meredith: Having the homecoming outside didn’t have too much of an effect on socializing, but unlike previous years where you could go to the fieldhouse to take a break, there was nowhere else to really go.
Trevor: Not much, [it] felt very similar to inside.
How did homecoming relate to your expectations for the dance?
Lainey: I honestly did not think many people would go due to the concern of COVID, however, many people went, and it ended up being better than I expected. I thought that teachers would try and limit the crowds, but it ended up feeling like a normal dance.
Trevor: My expectations were lots of good, new music, but that was not what happened.
Meredith: I didn’t go into homecoming with any expectations, it just felt like we were sort of getting back to normal. But personally, I prefer an indoor homecoming, to me, it just feels more exciting with all of the decorations.
Did you like outdoor homecoming more or less than homecoming from previous years?
Trevor: Outdoor was much better because I liked how it was not hot, and there was also more space.
Lainey: I liked it way better outdoors. I felt like I could actually get fresh air and the coolness of the evening also helped cool people down after dancing for a while. During the indoor homecoming, I felt like I could never cool down.
What would you have changed about this year’s homecoming?
Lainey: The music choices. They were not great dancing songs. There were a few that were good, however, a majority I had never heard of. I also wish people besides seniors could bring guests outside of the district (I understand the COVID risk).
Alex: More slow songs.
Meredith: From this homecoming, I would’ve changed some of the music and had the DJ a level above us.
What is something you liked from homecoming this year that you believe should be implemented in the future?
Lainey: Hold it outdoors, connect the ticket to ID, food trucks, and a bigger space for the dance.
Alex: Using student IDs to get in. It was quick and easy to get in, while in the past you had to physically buy tickets.
Trevor: Have it outside every year.
Meredith: Some things I think that we should implement at future homecomings is having other activities, like the bean bags that were available. It was nice to feel like there were other things to do.
Overall, students were just glad there was the opportunity to go to a homecoming dance this year because it was a way back to familiarity. While some aspects of the dance could have gone better, there were also great additions to the event this year that students hope to see again in the future. Most importantly, students got to dress up with their friends and spend time enjoying their teenage years.