Senior Celebration

Despite pandemic, parade commemorates the class of 2020’s end of school year

Claire Powell, Editor-in-Chief

Because of COVID-19, the class of 2020’s graduation was postponed. However, Shawnna Lawson, parent of senior Shay Lawson, still wanted to do something to celebrate the end of their four years of high school — and that was a parade.

“I was upset that the school had not organized anything for the seniors,” Lawson said. “I wanted them to be celebrated.”

Lawson created a Facebook page asking for ideas on how to honor the seniors. Kristen Faust, parent of Paige Faust, commented that there should be a parade.

“She [made] a flyer, and I started sharing it an contacting some of the seniors,” Lawson said. “[Faust] contacted Overland Park and made sure we did not need to get a permit and that we didn’t have to get the roads closed. As long as we followed traffic laws and did not stop traffic, everything was fine.”

After checking the legalities of the parade, Lawson contacted 2020 senior student council representatives to help promote it.

“I asked if [they] would be willing to lead the parade, and they were happy to do that,” Lawson said. “They helped me organize and let the seniors know [through social media] to decorate cars and follow them outside of Walmart.”

Though Lawson was delighted with the final production of the parade, she said she would make some changes.

“If I could do it again, I would probably put a little more planning into it [because] it was a little last-minute,” Lawson said. “I would make the route a little shorter and not on a street with stoplights [or] plan it to where I could shut down the road so everyone could be together.”

Though she would have made some alterations for the parade, the feedback was nothing but positive.

“The parents actually want to do it every single year [because] they loved it so much,” she said. “They were so happy to see everyone smiling and happy.”

Lawson was pleased with work done for the parade and felt like her ultimate goal for it was accomplished.

“Happiness and closure [was what I wanted for the seniors] — I’m just glad they got to celebrate and could come together to just be happy,” she said. “There were a lot of smiles, and that’s what I wanted.”