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Posted: 10/10/12

HOMECOMING 2012. Above, Romeo High School seniors Austin Bernard and Justyna Marasco were crowned as the 2012 Homecoming king and queen at the Oct. 5 varsity football game at Barnabo Field. Below top, Romeo's mascot, Matt Hills, `09 RHS graduate, holds the trophy for the best float in the Homecoming Parade before it was awarded to the freshman class. Below center, One of the last football players, Austin Keller, was called to walk through the tunnel of applauding cheerleaders to join his teammates at the end. Below bottom, seniors formed their pyramid first, winning the pyramid formation contest against the other grade levels at the Pep Rally.

(Observer photo above by Mike Nicley)

(Observer photos below by Judith Kimpan)

Romeo brings energy and
spirit to its Homecoming

Observer Special Writer
      It isn't Emerald City and it doesn't have a yellow brick road, but there's no place like       Taking the theme from the Wizard of Oz, Homecoming week was filled with activities such as a Powder Puff football game, playhouse decorating, Wizard of Oz theme dress-up days, a parade and a pep rally. At the end of the week, it was the "Big Game against IKE" and the Homecoming Dance.
       Kim Droope and Cindy Nicolia, English Department, are Student Council co-advisers helping Student Council members put on a memorable Homecoming. The co-advisers stressed that students pick their theme for the dance and floats and how they will celebrate Spirit Week.
       "We guide them, but it's student-driven," said Droope.
       Spirit Week began by offering students a chance to wear just about everything in their closet on the different days going from country to formal with wacky in the middle of the week.
       On Monday, students used the theme of "Lions, Tigers and Bears . . . Oh My" to don a Detroit Lions or Tigers jersey. After school on Monday, students participated in the Powder Puff football game.
       Tuesday was "Scarecrow, Crops and Country" where a preponderance of plaid shirts and cowboy hats were seen in the hallways. Katie Hemstrom, senior, won the Best Costume Award at RETC for her portrayal of a scarecrow.
       It was "Wacky Witches and Wizards" on Wednesday. If students didn't have a witch's or wizard's hat or cape, they could dress wacky.
       Members of the Homecoming Court rode in style for this year's Homecoming Parade held Wednesday evening. Serra Chevrolet donated use of new 2013 vehicles for the Homecoming Court to ride in and Heidebreicht Chevrolet also helped with the loan of vehicles. The playhouses each class built were showcased as the band, various school groups and sports teams marched down Main Street.
       Homecoming donations from some community businesses include Keller and Associates, Romeo Family Restaurant, Younger's Irish Tavern, FAMS Screen Printing & Embroidery, Lock's Cleaners, Sugar Art Cake and Candy Supplies and Anytime Fitness.
       The weekend before Homecoming Week there was a build-off at the Lions Field. Students met for two days to work on the playhouses. The RETC construction class helped build the shells of the playhouses. There was a shorter time to complete the playhouses than in the past, but this allowed all classes to work on their playhouses at the same time and place.
       Thursday was Spirit Day. Each class was assigned a color and a hall to decorate and the class dressed in that color.
       Cole Rapp, freshman Student Council member, discussed how the colors picked for the floats and hallway decorations related to the Wizard of Oz.
       "Freshman had black as in the Witch of the West. Sophomores were given green like the Emerald City. Juniors had yellow for the Yellow Brick Road and red for the seniors as in the ruby slippers," explained Rapp.
       Some students took Spirit Day seriously. Seniors Stephanie Seder, Maria Smith, Hannah Schramm, Ashley Glowicki, Olivia Sloan and Kathleen Refior met after school to create their own individual "Seniors 2013" spirit shirt.
       Friday celebrated with the theme, "There's no place like . . . Romeo," and students wore Romeo attire or purchased the Homecoming shirt senior Jordan Lodge designed.
       Speaking loudly to be heard over the boisterous crowd, Kendra Walls, drama teacher, announced for the Pep Rally before the game. The dance team rocked, cheerleaders formed pyramids, and contests where classes were pitted against each other in a pie game, pyramid forming, and who could dress up the fastest were played as the band filled the gym with music at the lively pep rally.
       Since all were gathered, it was announced that the Watchdog football game, a fundraiser for breast cancer, raised $46,850.
       "If someone needs help, Romeo is always there for them. You guys did that, congratulations," said Walls.
       The freshman class won the float contest with their theme of "Aunt Em's Farm and Over the Rainbow." Half the playhouse was black and white and the other half was rainbow colors to represent how the movie changed from black and white to color. There was a tornado on the side and instead of the witch's feet there were Eagle talons to represent crushing IKE.
       The juniors came out as winners in the Hallway Decoration contest. Juniors made bricks with yellow tape, hung yellow balloons on the ceiling and put yellow sticky notes with each student's name spelling "Juniors."
       Drumline members surprised students when they turned a garbage can upside down then wheeled out bakery shelves with pots and pans hung on it and a table laden with bowls, pots and pans transforming the makeshift kitchen equipment into percussion instruments producing a strong beat.
       A menu on the table read "Tonight's Special: Roasted Eagle, Romeo Style."
       The football game brought the community together at Barnabo Stadium to watch the Bulldogs play against the Eisenhower Eagles. The Bulldogs put up a fight but lost to Ike. Austin Bernard and Justyna Marasco were announced as Homecoming King and Queen.
       It's the 15th Homecoming for Student Activities and Athletics Director Greg Brynaert who summed up how many felt.
       "There's nothing more exciting and traditional than Homecoming," he said. "I feel the energy the students bring to this event."

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