Nantucket High School Spirit Week and Homecoming Weekend went smoothly this year, even with some minor changes from prior years.
Spirit Week, the five days leading up to Homecoming Weekend, began on Monday, October 17, with Multiple Day. Formerly known as Twin Day, students often dressed as triplets or quintuplets and so the day was renamed by the School Council. Tuesday was Color Day and each grade and the faculty were assigned specific colors: freshman wore green, sophomores wore red, juniors wore white, faculty wore teal, and the seniors wore black - opting to follow in the footsteps of the class of 2016.
Some students found themselves scrambling to get the right color for their class. “I wasn’t very prepared for Color Day,” said freshman Haleigh Johnson, “but luckily at soccer practice, I was able to hear about it from the older girls and pull together something fun. It was by far the easiest day to dress for.”
Wednesday was Character Day; many students expressed that this was one of the more challenging days for which to prepare. Students and faculty were invited to dress as a favorite character, icon, or person. Seniors Grace Bartlett and Gwen Malcolm dressed as the Princess and the Pauper, senior Abby Macallister as the ‘Arthur fist meme,’ junior Emily Kitsock as Dwight Schrute of The Office, and sophomores Niya Marrett, Emma Laredo, and Kathryn Feldmann were the infamous Powerpuff Girls.
Thursday, Lazy Day, was the most difficult day to get School Council approval. “The fear was that some of the outfits would break dress code and not be school appropriate,” said President Sierra Gray. “The term ‘Pajama Day’ was purposely avoided because the Council decided it was suggestive of improper clothing choices.” School Council members worried that many would take Lazy Day as a chance to wear overly revealing loungewear or excessively baggy clothing that promoted a slobbish nature. Luckily, such issues never arose as students complied with school guidelines and wore slippers, sweatshirts, and sweatpants.
The Spirit Week tradition of hallway decorating took place Thursday evening. Occupying the middle and upper floor hallways of the high school, it was up to each class to conceive of and craft the best hallway design. The classes prepared weeks in advance, drawing, painting, and building props around their chosen themes. The freshmen and sophomore classes created themes of Jurassic Park and Dr. Seuss, respectively. The junior and senior classes chose Scooby Doo and Space/Farm-themes, respectively. Unfortunately, many class officers were off island for the bulk of the decorating due to girls’ soccer and field hockey games, which was an initial cause for concern, but other students took leadership roles and all went smoothly.
Friday was Whaler Pride Day and, not surprisingly, had the best participation out of the weeks’ spirit days. Students dressed the part to promote school spirit and the tone in the hallways was all about ‘Whaler Pride’ for the weekends’ games against Martha’s Vineyard and Holbrook.
The annual Fall Sports Dinner and Pep Rally also took place Friday night. All the fall sports teams: football, girls and boys soccer, volleyball, golf, field hockey, cross country, and cheerleading joined in the Cyrus Pierce cafeteria for a pasta dinner before the pep rally. Held in the high school gymnasium, the pep rally was led by the varsity and JV cheerleaders and featured senior recognition to all the graduating members of the fall sports teams. Additionally, there was a lively game of musical chairs (won by senior Fernando Young), and speeches from each fall coach, as well as competing cheering among the classes. Later, continuing in the tradition of Homecoming Weekend, students joined with other members of their class or team to put together their floats for the parade on Saturday morning.
The float parade Saturday morning, and all the games to follow, had to be rearranged due to a poor weather forecast. All scheduled JV games were cancelled due to concerns that the visiting teams would not be able to make it back home. The floats began at 10 am - 30 minutes earlier than previously scheduled - because most of the varsity games were moved to an earlier time. Girls and boys varsity soccer and the field hockey teams competed against Martha’s Vineyard. The varsity football team took on Holbrook/Avon at noon, much earlier than the original 5 pm scheduled time. At the end of the day, the boys soccer lost 1-2; girls soccer lost 0-1; field hockey lost 2-4 and the Whalers’ football squad won 44-0.
Homecoming Court, made up of senior fall athletes, consisted of Blake Lazarus, Darcy Foulkes, Isabell Beal, Bella Kyburg, Emily Ballinger, KD Tornovish, Andrew Dawson, Travis Demby, Cory Ryder, Simon Johnson, Caleb Patterson, and JT Gamberoni. While some of those on the court were concerned about getting to team warm-ups in time, they stayed on and enjoyed the ceremony until the end. Football team captain Travis Demby and field hockey player KD Tornovish won the titles of Homecoming King and Queen. Also announced during halftime were the winners of Best Float (seniors), Best Hallway (sophomores), and the class who had the best participation over the course of spirit week (seniors). Overall, Whaler spirit and pride made for a fun week at NHS.