Tricounty News

Homecoming 2008

Homecoming is primarily defined as an instance of returning home. Most of us can't think of the word without conjuring up images of high school dances and the big game but, at its heart, Homecoming is "a welcoming back of residents and alumni." It is a custom that took hold in the early 1900s as a way for schools and communities to reach out to alumni and bridge the gap between past and present through celebration. Homecoming is an opportunity to celebrate home. Homecoming is early this year. Students will have occupied desks for less than a week and it will be upon us; Kimball Homecoming 2008 will be the week of September 8-12. It will be a week filled with both old and new traditions. Some of us remember a Powder Puff football game, some of us don't. It is such traditions, though, these shared experiences that serve as a link between current students and staff, current residents and alumni who once called Kimball their home. With that in mind, there are many fun events for the community to support and participate in during Homecoming week: King and Queen Coronation at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Sept. 8, in the high school cafetorium; Homecoming volleyball game at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 11,; Powder Puff football game at   2 p.m. Friday, Sept. 12; Homecoming football game at 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 12; and the Homecoming dance at 9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 12 in the cafetorium. The Homecoming dance is open to all Kimball students in grades 9-12 and registered guests. The cross-country team will be in Annandale Sept. 8, and at the New London-Spicer Invitational Sept. 11. However, the cross-country team returns home Sept. 18 for the EV-W/Kimball Invitational at 4:15 p.m. Check the Tri-County News for more detailed information on Homecoming week events. There is another tradition, however, that many school staff members, parents and community members have come to see as detracting from the true spirit of Homecoming: the annual Homecoming war between the junior and senior classes resulting in the squeezably soft streamers we see hanging from the trees all week. Harmless fun between kids? Sure, there is definitely that aspect to consider. It would just be easier for some if the gauzy streamers didn't show up at around 3 in the morning. No one does their safest driving at 3 a.m., regardless of age. Plus, who does their best on very little sleep the next day in school or the next afternoon at the game? Homecoming can also be seen as an opportunity for a generation of students to show the rest of the community who they are. A chance for them to say to returning alumni, to their parents, to their fellow residents: this is our home, too, and our opinions matter. When students step up to the plate and collectively do their best because they have pride in their home, in their community and in themselves, they show the rest of the community that they are a valuable asset and their education should be taken seriously, not just that they know how to clean up copious amounts of toilet paper. They take their place in the history of a community. The Homecoming football game will also mark a 25-year celebration of the 1983 Kimball Area High School football team and their participation in the state high school football tournament. Please attend the Homecoming football game Friday, Sept. 12, in recognition of this achievement, but also in support of the amazing efforts currently being made by all our students. What was true of students who called Kimball home in 1983 is true now: success is measured by pride and respect. Make Homecoming an opportunity to celebrate home.