SAYRE — When the Sayre High School first contemplated how it would carry out graduation given the COVID-19 restrictions at the time, Riverfront Park was viewed as the ideal venue for a drive-in-style ceremony. Then, as Bradford County progressed to the less restrictive green phase of reopening, the district announced last week that graduation would take place at the Lockhart Street Bowl. During Monday’s school board meeting, high school Principal Dayton Handrick announced that they left the final decision up to the graduates, who voted to hold a drive-in-style ceremony at Riverfront Park on Friday rather than have a stadium graduation with fewer guests in attendance due to the state’s 250 person event limit.
“We had worked on it, and we thought if we were in green we could be outside, but obviously green came with some restrictions,” Handrick said. “We planned to move back to the (Lockhart Street Bowl) but with the restrictions, and people had some concerns, so we thought the (right) thing to do was to have all the kids vote. Each senior had one vote, and it was a close margin, but in the end Riverfront prevailed, so we’ll have a nice ceremony over there.”
Instead of each graduate receiving two tickets to hand out, they will be able to have two car loads of guests in attendance. Parents will only be able to step out of the vehicles when their graduate crosses the stage.
The 70 graduates will be positioned with appropriate social distancing near the Little League field.
“I have told the kids we are pretty lucky. If we were much bigger, obviously, we wouldn’t be able to (have this type of ceremony) and there are a lot of schools that aren’t lucky enough to be in green or be (small enough in size) to be together one last time,” Handrick said.
Those unable to attend will be able to watch the commencement on the district’s Facebook page and website, or listen on 102.1 FM WAVR.