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Chinook High School Outlines Its Graduation Plan for the Class of 2020


May 13, 2020

Chinook High School

Planned in conjunction with the Blaine County Health Department and approved by the Chinook School Board of Trustees, the Chinook High School (CHS) graduating class of 2020 will celebrate their commencement exercises in a Drive-in Style Graduation at 8:00 p.m. on May 17.

The ceremony, which will take place in the parking lot behind the grandstand at the Blaine County Fairgrounds, will also be broadcast using the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) online streaming system. CHS has used the NFHS system for its athletic contests, making it possible for people to view events from any location with internet access and a suitable electronic device.

As representative of their tastes, the CHS class of 2020 has chosen the white tulip as their class flower, the colors orange and charcoal gray, and the motto "You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough" by Mae West.

At 7:00 p.m. on Sunday, wearing their caps and gowns, the graduates will meet at Hoon Field with their cars decorated. If friends or family members are riding along in the graduate's vehicle, they must remain in the car during this time. A photo session will transpire for individual cap and gown pictures and a socially distanced class picture.

By 8:00 p.m., all graduation families and other attendees should be parked behind the grandstand for the ceremony. Parking will take place in three tiers:

• Tier 1: Reserved for Graduates (2 rows for 21 cars-one row of 10 and one row of 11)

• Tier 2: Graduate Families Only (2 rows - tickets to display in windshield will be issued with caps and gowns)

• Tier 3: Other Attendees (as many cars as will safely fit in the remaining space)

The Ceremony will begin with the graduates' performing a car processional, as they each drive into their reserved parking spaces. Once graduates are in place, a welcome will follow.

After the welcome, a series of speeches and presentations will emerge on the "big screen" created by the back of the grandstand. First, Valedictorian, Raynee Hasler will share an inspirational and motivational message with her classmates.

Following Hasler's words, Salutatorian, Kendra McMaster will deliver her speech to those gathered at the fairgrounds.

Next, the Commencement Speaker, Doug Hayes, will share thoughts on making good choices. An educator for 33 years, Hayes served in Froid for eight years and in Chinook for 25, where he taught junior high social studies the first six years before moving on to teach high school World History, American History, and Government. After hearing Hayes speak, scholarship presentation speeches will be shown.

Once that phase of the ceremony is complete, Superintendent Darin Hannum will ask the graduates to please exit their vehicles and to move to the front of them to stand until their name is announced. At the same time, a list of any honors, awards, and scholarships the graduate has earned will be read.

Each senior in turn will approach the stage and retrieve his or her graduation box which will contain a diploma, a keepsake program, and any scholarships or academic awards. Graduates will then walk across the stage, pluck their flower(s), transfer their tassels, and return to the front of their vehicles.

During this part of the ceremony, parents will be allowed to exit their vehicles to take pictures. School officials ask that only one person exit the vehicle and that anyone who does so maintains a six foot distance from any other photographers. Each should return to his/her vehicle as quickly as possible, so as to expedite the process.

After all graduates have collected their graduation box, they will be announced as the graduated class of 2020 and can honk horns, cheer, and throw their caps in the air! Once they have collected their caps, they should return to their cars.

At approximately 9:00 p.m., the traditional senior slide show will be projected onto the back of the grandstands. Following that presentation, fireworks will be set off as an end to the celebration.

In addition to the ceremony, those attending graduation will want to view the picture boards and perhaps deposit a card in one of the graduate's baskets. These will be on display in the Commercial Building on individual and well-spaced tables.

Anyone wishing to view the picture boards and/or leave cards and gifts, can enter the building to do so. School officials ask that visitors use the provided hand sanitizer upon entering the building. They also ask that family groups stay together and maintain distance from other families by following the guideline that only one family unit is allowed at any one table at a given time.

Besides providing health and safety reminders, Blaine County Health Department told the class, "You are a historic graduating class! We are SO proud of you all!"


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