Homecoming heroes - 'Who's Your Hero?' is the theme of week-long WHS festivities

BY JANE TURPIN MOORE, Daily Globe WORTHINGTON -- When posing the question, "Who's Your Hero?" in the next few days, student council officers at Worthington High School (WHS) are hoping the answer is a foregone conclusion: The Trojan, WHS's mascot...

The Worthington High School 2013 Homecoming Court includes: Front row (from left) — Harley Carstensen, Aleanna Haig, Rachel Drietz, Paige Gravenhof, Ariana Lopez, Alicia Khatt, Annie Lesnar, Patricia Marin. Back row — Zach Boever, Victor Meza Candelario, Will Dudley, John Martin, Blake Schroeder, Alex Purdy, Trevor Wietzema, Cameron Jenson. (RYAN McGAUGHEY/DAILY GLOBE)


WORTHINGTON - When posing the question, “Who’s Your Hero?” in the next few days, student council officers at Worthington High School (WHS) are hoping the answer is a foregone conclusion: The Trojan, WHS’s mascot.
“The student council liked the idea of a superhero theme for Homecoming 2013,” explained student council co-president Ari Lopez, a WHS senior. “We want the student body to think the Trojan is their hero - especially this week.”
Students and staff in District 518 schools are certainly getting in the groove with Homecoming activities.
At Monday night’s coronation ceremony in the WHS gymnasium, Paige Gravenhof and Blake Schroeder were selected as queen and king, respectively, to rule over this year’s festivities, which will culminate on Friday with a 2 p.m. pep fest, 7 p.m. football game and dance.
“Setting up for coronation was really fun,” assured Lopez, who was also among those on the WHS Homecoming court. “We got to decorate things the way we liked, but it was challenging to write the script for coronation.”
“It’s been fun to be a part of planning my senior Homecoming,” added Sarah Janssen, co-president of the WHS student council. “You know what’s coming as the excitement builds up, and it’s been great to spend extra time with friends working on things.”
With daily themed dress-up days, Homecoming T-shirts, beads and buttons for sale over the lunch hour and several athletic contests taking place this week, WHS is lively and energized.
But a festive air also prevails at Worthington Middle School (WMS), where Assistant Principal Tony Hastings says that students and staff are similarly striving to get in the spirit.
“We have theme days here, too, though they’re a little different than the ones at the high school,” shared Hastings. “A few years ago, we started making part of Friday afternoon a special time because a lot of our students don’t get to go to the high school and experience the football game, band and other festivities there.”
On Friday afternoon, the seventh and eighth-grade football teams will scrimmage on the WMS field, while the boys’ and girls’ soccer teams will play just west of there. The entire student body is able to watch those athletic pursuits, enjoy music spun by DJ Justin Spaethe or purchase Cold Stone Creamery ice cream.
“It’s about getting in the school spirit, making it fun and helping the kids realize there are things you can root for and do,” Hastings said. “Keeping kids engaged is good, and the student council here has made posters and banners that are in the hallways.”
WHS staff serving as student council advisers this year are Kerry Johnson and Kayla DeBoer. They have worked with the WHS student council members, including Lopez and Janssen, in coordinating the school’s Homecoming activities.
“I just like seeing everyone’s school spirit and cheering on all of the sports teams,” said Lopez. “It’s good to encourage others to do that, too, so we can have a really fun and enjoyable school year.
“Homecoming is a way to bring students together.”
Janssen observed that Monday’s “Jersey Day” was a hit.
“We had quite a few students participate in that,” she said. “A lot of kids wore their Vikings jerseys, even though they just lost.”
And Janssen wasn’t shy about sharing her hopes for WHS Homecoming.
“I hope the dance turns out good,” Janssen revealed. “And I think it would be really awesome if our football team could win.”
District 518 activities during Homecoming week include:
Today: Royalty Day at WHS, Super Hero Day at WMS; boys’ soccer vs. SW MN Christian at Trojan field, 6:15 p.m.; girls’ soccer vs. Waseca at Waseca, 6:30 p.m.; WHS/ALC parent/teacher conferences, 3:30-6:30 p.m.; cross country at MCC, 4:30 p.m.
Wednesday: Class Color Day at WHS, Fake Injury Day at WMS.
Thursday: Super Hero Day at WHS, Mustache Day at WMS; girls’ tennis vs. New Ulm, WMS courts, 4:30 p.m.; volleyball vs. Luverne, at Luverne, 7:15 p.m.
Friday: School Spirit Day at both WHS and WMS; WHS football vs. Annandale, Trojan Field, 7 p.m.; pep fest by day, dance by night (students only) at WHS.

Paige Gravenhof and Blake Schroeder were crowned WHS Homecoming Queen and King, respectively, Monday. (RYAN McGAUGHEY/DAILY GLOBE)

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