From my personal page...I have seen pictures posted from last nights festivities… Please share your memories and any pictures of past homecomings
When I was in kindergarten , I saw my first homecoming at our high school basketball game. Our school was so small but the homecoming presentation of the queen and her court was the game of the season and mesmerizing. A portion of the stage was transformed into a throne area. The attendants and their escorts made a grand entrance under the spotlight in our blackened gymnasium. The basketball team captains were the queen’s escorts, dressed in their uniforms, complete with the regulation short-shorts of the 60’s and 70’s and very awesome warm-up jackets. The freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior ladies of the queen’s court were escorted in, on the arm of the most handsome and dreamy “man” from her class, often dressed in beautiful matching dresses, designed to be a part of the backdrop for the most fair of them all…the homecoming queen, whose dress was elegant and fitting of for the royalty of Pettisville High School. She was crowned, presented with her bouquet, and kissed on the cheek by her escorts, to the oohs and aahhs of the crowd. That year, three of my kindergarten classmates were the bearers of the crown and the elegant dozen roses…Tammy and Tina Spengler were the little girls in sweet little fairy princess dresses and something I had never seen before…ballet slippers! My Sunday School classmate Ronnie Burkholder carried the crown on a small pillow and dressed in little boy finery. This is my memory, perhaps some of it only in the mind of a this fairy-tale-loving girl. It may be mixed into the memories of the many PHS Homecomings that I have attended over the years, but it felt magical back then. Even the afterparty was only for the royals and their families…food was served, but I don’t know what it was because I was never in attendance. There was no dance for the other students back then, that was before the no-dancing ban was lifted at Pettisville. No dancing…that sounds so sad…no dancing! simple casual collections homecoming party
When I was in high school, I got to help with decorating the throne area. Mrs. Golda Boyer, our high school business teacher and Booster Advisor, kept on top of our planning as we reported back to her to ensure that all was fit for the queen and her court. The presentation of the queen and her court was highlighted by biographical sketches, which were read by various students or community members, chosen for their outstanding vocal reading skills…most notable among them was Luana Wyse Esterline. Her voice stands out as direct, clear, precise, and purposeful. Oh and should I forget, our pep band was always amazing, dating back to when we were allowed to play “Stripper” and old standbys like Wipeout, and our beloved school song where everyone knew every word and cheerleaders like Marilyn Rychener, Deanna First, Ann Rupp Hale and later Kandy Lantz Selgo, Ronna Riegsecker Rice, Mig Frey Riegsecker and a host of others clapped, sang, and led our fans to sing with enthusiasm and excitement. Mrs. Nona Britsch (Liechty) Rupp did our mascot duties proudly and was a precursor to this year’s amazing bird!
Our head coach, Mr. Richard “Dick” Selgo ran a tight ship and Mr. David Lersch our superintendent, made sure that everyone stood at attention while the National Anthem was played. Decorum, manners, and sportsmanship were the name of the game. Community pride and spirit were alive and well. The years have flown by and along with it many a queen and court, players and cheerleaders…although its different this year…the cheerleaders are fans in the stands. This year another queen, the younger sister of the queen from a decade ago, was crowned…the tradition of beauty continues in the Randy and Joy Beck family, Randy was no doubt one of those handsome “men” of the court back in the day and his wife a beauty from a neighboring school district. Now-a-days there is dancing and every student has the opportunity to wear their finery to celebrate homecoming, friendship, and community. And I still get to “decorate”, by providing the flowers for the evening…designed each year to fit the tastes of the queen. The spotlight will shine and the magic of the kiss remains.
Today we are taking a break from the book of Acts to remind you that this week…Valentine’s Day is Ash Wednesday. I don’t recall the last time that has happened… a day for love and the beginning of the season of Lent together, a time for extravagant expressions of love and the start of a time of purification, self-denial, and prayer. Lent is intended for repentance, fasting, and an opportunity to focus on our coming King. In the time that Jesus lived on this Earth, many did not honor him. They mocked Him as King of the Jews, they scourged him, and ultimately crucified him. When I consider the honor our school community gives to their queen, it shames me to think of how we mistreat our King Jesus. How have we dishonored and otherwise disrespected his kingship in our lives?
As we enter Lent, we are provided yet another opportunity to examine our hearts. I hope that this particular Lenten Season, will find us intent on allowing God to root out our sins and help us to find ourselves in a place of true Alleluia this Easter. (Perhaps there will even be dancing!). Since Easter falls on April Fool's Day, perhaps we can use it as a day to mark the turning away from foolish ways.
I love the hope in today’s verse: “The Lord, Your God is in your midst, a mighty Savior, who will rejoice over YOU with gladness, and renew you in His Love.” Zephaniah 3:17
The backside always matters…God looks beyond our sin to see the queen and king inside of us…made in His royal image.