Grad with popcorn: High school students to hold ceremony at Enderby drive-in theatre - InfoNews

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Grad with popcorn: High school students to hold ceremony at Enderby drive-in theatre

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May 22, 2020 - 8:00 AM

While the COVID-19 pandemic has put a stop to high school students having a traditional grad ceremony, the graduating class at Armstrong's Pleasant Valley Secondary School will still have a grad to remember.

The Starlight Drive-In in nearby Enderby will be showing the Grade 12 students' graduation ceremony, while parents and students sit in their vehicles, munch popcorn and watch the pre-recorded event on the big screen.

"We had to come up with a different approach so that we were still recognizing our students' accomplishments," Pleasant Valley Secondary School principal Chelsea Prince told "This is a really important milestone for them."

Prince said she heard of a grad ceremony in the U.S. being held at a drive-in cinema and thought the class of 2020 could do the same thing at the drive-in in Enderby.

A few weeks before the drive-in event, groups of 20 students at a time will be filmed in their graduation garb. Students will don a cap and gown and walk across the stage, talk about their achievements and plans for the future. The video footage will then edited and include various speeches and other graduation norms. The film will then be shown on the big screen at the Starlight Drive-In June 17.

"We have such a strong sense of community here, grad is actually a huge community event," Prince said.

The film will also be streamed online for extended relatives who want to see the event.

Prince said the school has close to 100 graduating students and while students are disappointed this year's event is far from normal - and they can't have the usual dry grad after-party - the students realize they're making the best out of an unusual situation.

"Even though it's not what they imagined, even though it's not what they hoped for, it'll be a story they can tell their grandchildren one day about living through this pandemic and how we managed to pull off a grad ceremony even though things were not the same as they usually are," she said.

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