By ANYSSA BOHANAN
CENTRAL OREGON DAILY NEWS
Normally, Crook County High School’s graduation would take place at Ward Rhoden Stadium in Prineville.
Sisters High School graduates would walk the stage in the school gym.
While their ceremonies won’t be happening in a traditional sense this year, the Crook County and Sisters school districts have come up with creative ways to make sure graduation is still a night to remember.
“We’ve been working hard with our seniors to see what they want,” Crook County High School Principal Michelle Jonas said.
“I think it’s going to be pretty cool,” Sisters High School Principal Joe Hosang said.
Like Bend-La Pine Schools, Crook County will record a virtual graduation ceremony that will be live-streamed next month.
But, that’s not all they’ve planned.
“We’re going to have a parade, that’s what the students voted on,” Jonas said. “They’re going to have some kind of vehicle, something where the community can see them in the back of the rig as they drive through our parade route. There’s going to be different spots along the way with stage setup so along the parade route their name will be read multiple times.”
Jonas says they’re still finalizing the parade route with the city, but are planning to line Prineville’s Main Street with signs for all graduates.
Just a week after Crook County’s celebrations, Sisters High School will hold their own ceremony at the rodeo grounds.
“So we’re going to do a drive in style graduation,” said Lynne Fendall with Sisters High School. “Students will be given two parking passes, one for the car that they’re in, and one for family members. They’ll be given a time to arrive and they’ll park in order, and we’re going to use FM frequency to pipe the sound into everybody’s cars.”
Though Principal Hosang will be the sole person on stage, the ceremony will also include pre-taped speeches from the Valedictorian and Salutatorian.
The new graduation plans aren’t what anyone expected at the beginning of the school year, but both districts say they hope students will cherish them all the same.
“We just want to make the best we can for them in these hard times,” Jonas said.
“Hopefully we’re leaving them with a pretty cool memory,” said Hosang. “We’re hoping that we can provide some closure.”
Sisters High School graduation will take place on June 12th at 7 p.m. at the Sisters Rodeo Grounds. The district says they’ll have more details next week.
The Crook County High School parade will start at 3 p.m. on June 5th. The virtual graduation will be posted to the Crook County School District Youtube page on June 5th at 6:30 p.m.