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AHS gears up for Homecoming

As colder days approach, preparations are heating up for the Oct. 10 Homecoming at Andalusia High School.

In honor of alumni who have graduated in a year ending in a 4, such as 1994 and 1984 and so on, the class of 2004 has designated special events and skits corresponding to the different years for students. For example, one class may have students dressed up in clothes relative to the 1974 era while another class might be clad in 1984 attire.

The alumni will also be the guests of honor at the assembly in the auditorium scheduled for 8:15 a.m. and a reception in the cafeteria immediately following the assembly on homecoming day.

The Usher Club, which is ultimately responsible for most of this year's activities, has reinstated floats for the parade which will be held Oct. 10 at 2 p.m. The floats were unavailable a few years ago, but the theme for this year's floats will be Broadway.

"Different teachers from each grade will be in charge of the floats," Principal Dr. Daniel Shakespeare said. "Different Broadway plays over the years will be represented with the floats."

"Because of the community's involvement and support, we were able to bring back the floats," Donna Glisson, assistant principal said. "Students are selling class T-shirts for the funding of the floats.

"We'll have all of the teachers decorate their doors. When the alumni come back and tour the school, all the doors are decorated in a theme, this year being Broadway. The floats, the doors, the club cars in the parade, and everything will be themed on a play from Broadway. So, the theme will be educational too."

The parade will depart from the school at 1 p.m. and will be visible from downtown Andalusia at 2 p.m.

"We've worked ourselves to death and the students have worked hard in preparation for this year's event," continued Glisson. "It really represents leadership and community involvement. It's just a good connection to have between the school and the community."

Glisson added there is a lot of good that comes with the school, but sometimes people tend to focus only on the bad.

"If all a person hears about is bad in newspapers, then there is a feeling of hopelessness," she said. "But there is a lot of good that comes from our school, and that should be something to be proud of."

Glisson said she knows about pride, especially hometown pride. She graduated from AHS, and said she enjoys working at her high school.

"It's something I remember vividly during my years at AHS," she said. "This is something that will stay with the students the rest of their lives, and it's just a great feeling to be able to give them the opportunity to experience that."

The school previously sent out letters to alumni with details about the annual extravaganza, but because of the fact that most of the people have either moved or changed their names, school officials have resorted to other means of contact.

"We've changed some things," Glisson said. "We used to send out letters to alumni informing them about homecoming, but the mail was returned almost as much as it was sent out. Along with the long-distance phone calls, it was extremely difficult and expensive to contact them."

The school is very competitive when it comes to homecoming, said Shakespeare.

"There will be both a float and door competition," Shakespeare said. "Typically at homecoming, there is simply a lot of excitement, spirit, and competition."

Not only will the winners of the door competition receive the title of "most-spirited," but they may also get a free meal.

"The class with the best decorated door will be awarded a party," Glisson said. "And by party, I mean a breakfast, lunch, or desert at a local restaurant."

Homecoming truly is a big deal in Andalusia, according to Glisson.

"You've never seen homecoming until you see Andalusia's," she said. "The streets are blocked off for the parade and the whole community gets involved. It really is overwhelming."

Pre-game activities, including crowning of the AHS homecoming queen, recognizing the alumni, and music by the band, will begin at 6:30 p.m. at Andalusia Stadium.