The lowdown on the Homecoming Dance


Sabrina Guilbeault

Remember when we used to do things like this? Pep Rally circa 2013. It’s probably going to look different this year.

We’re finally back, with masks, and social distancing, but we’re back, to some type of normal, so of course, homecoming has been a peak topic of interest and inquiry. DHS hasn’t had a homecoming since 2019, building up the pressure on what is expected of this year’s homecoming and what it will actually be like. 

Rumors about what our homecoming would look like have traveled all over the school, whether it will be outside or even if we have to wear masks. Fortunately, senior class advisors and English teachers Wesley Lima and Jessica Lassey were able to provide some insight. Ms. Lassey said, “This year’s homecoming dance will be a bit different. We will be outdoors surrounded by twinkle lights and tons of up-lighting. There will be space heaters, water in the cafeteria, a projected slide show, and of course a good time.” She also added that there will also be a rain date, Saturday, November 20.

It may seem from a student perspective that homecoming is a simple necessity that comes along with being in high school, but in actuality it includes a long journey of formalities. Mr. Lima points out the complexity of the homecoming process. He said, “While Lassey and I helped our officers to organize the dance, we had to check in with Assistant Principal Ryan Ross Shea, Principal Thibault, Dr. Bonny Gifford, and even the Board of Health, and they make their decisions based on the guidance of others at the state level.”

According to custom, the pep rally is another important and school-spirit enhancing event that is held at DHS. Mr. Shea provided insight into the pep rally. “As the plans are laid out for the prep rally,” he said, “we hope everyone sees it through a positive lens. Hard work has already begun to put together a morning that is fun, celebrates student achievements, recognizes our fall teams, clubs, and band.” He highlighted the importance of experiences and the continuation of them to bring our high school community closer together. 

Not only have teachers and staff of DHS been enveloped in the organization and planning of homecoming and the pep rally, but students themselves. The members of the senior class student council have a large influence in the creation of DHS events and meet with administration to develop them. This year’s collaboration resulting in a separation of underclassmen and upperclassmen during the rally, cheaper homecoming tickets, and more themed spirit week days. Noting the reasoning behind these decisions, Senior Class Vice President Kat Charrier said, “Last year we missed spirit week and homecoming so this year the goal is to get people involved and brighten [the mood of] the school.”

Along with having a homecoming and the pep rally, DHS traditions surrounding homecoming will be taking place, a major one being superlatives. Describing the importance of senior superlatives, Ms. Lassey said, “Seeing the students awarded with trophies for a superlative or a crown or sash for the homecoming court is as if someone has hit you with a wand and a smile just spreads over your face. Just the seniors being seniors for a moment, celebrating a small award, it’s a moment that will stick with them, maybe forever.” 

As for seniors, this is their last homecoming, one of their last memories of high school. Even though COVID has developed a lot of obstacles that have put limits on what they can and can’t do, many are excited to finally have homecoming back. Senior Juliana Sousa said, “I think that due to the circumstances we’re in at the moment, the planning for homecoming went really well. I think we should be proud of the achievements we’ve made to control COVID so far, and I don’t think it’s that big of a deal that we need to wear masks. It’s kind of unifying that we still get to have these events given the circumstances we’re in still.” 

COVID hasn’t only been an obstacle for school activities but for the life of high schoolers and teachers in general. Through online school, having to wear masks during athletics, and adjusting to the new limits of social interaction. Although this has been proven to interrupt the normalcy of the high school experience, senior Kaitlyn Dasilva elaborated on how she planned to stay positive. She said, “I think I’m going try to make every moment last, and even with everything going on, I’m still going try to make it special, especially since we all get to experience it together.”

Julianna expanded on this idea of enthusiasm. She said, “I think it’s all about living in the moment and appreciating how unique it is. Having everyone together in a large group we haven’t had in a while will make it a lot more enjoyable and memorable to be with everyone again.”