Why are the dads out there?

I would say that homecoming went smoothly last Friday, but there is one question on everyone’s mind: where were the male attendants and king candidates during the crowning?

“I wasn’t aware of what was going on and what the scheduling was for that evening,” high school football coach Jon Novotny said. “I knew homecoming was going on but I wasn’t up to speed on what was supposed to happen.”

Escorting junior attendant Shandis Myers, parent Justin Weber steps in for his son. Weber was picked out of the audience by Pep Club sponsor Summer Younie when she found out that the football boys couldn’t walk the girls out.  photo by t. lange

Escorting junior attendant Shandis Myers, parent Justin Weber steps in for his son. Weber was picked out of the audience by Pep Club sponsor Summer Younie when she found out that the football boys couldn’t walk the girls out. photo by t. lange

Pep Club sponsor Summer Younie said she had spoken to athletic director Andrew Nation about the scheduling two weeks prior to the event.

“Mr. Nation and I discussed the schedule for homecoming a couple of weeks ago,” Younie said.  “I thought everything was a go and it wasn’t. I was proud of all the kids and the dads in attendance for stepping in and adapting on the fly.”

Younie blames herself for assuming Novotny was informed about the schedule for homecoming night. She was under the impression that the candidates who also played football would be able to participate before the game. She found out that the boys wouldn’t be there when the freshmen attendants were introduced.

Nation said it was the coach’s decision and didn’t comment further.

The boys were supposed to come out and help the girls out of the car, then stand with them during the remainder of the ceremony while they awaited the announcement of the king and queen. Instead, fans watched as dads from the crowd came to escort the ladies to the sidelines.

“I felt sorry for Abby having to crown herself,” parent Cathy Abbott said.

Abbott’s son was one of the king candidates.

It’s homecoming tradition for the king to crown the queen when announced. Queen Abby Giles said it was awkward having to crown herself when King Ethan Ailstock wasn’t there to help her.

Homecoming Queen Abby Giles claims her crown from flower girl Kodi McComb    before the football game     Friday. The Thunderbird football team lost 38-28. photo by t. lange

Homecoming Queen Abby Giles claims her crown from flower girl Kodi McComb before the football game Friday. The Thunderbird football team lost 38-28. photo by t. lange

“It would have been nice for them to be able to participate in homecoming,” Giles said. “I feel like it would have not only been memorable for the guys involved, but also for their parents and the people watching.”

As for our homecoming king himself, he was a little confused, but stayed calm and went with the flow.

“It did kind of seem different than usual,” Ailstock said. “I heard them announce it while we were warming up.”

Ailstock was later crowned as king at lunch on Monday in the multi-purpose area.

The football boys stand behind their coach through the bumps in the road. Senior candidate Brandon Abbott said that it wasn’t considered a big deal.

“Nobody was mad about it because we all knew we had to keep our heads in the game,” Brandon said. “He just told us that we couldn’t go over there.”

Although the situation was hectic at first, I think everyone would probably agree that it all worked out in the end. It seems as if there was a communication breakdown, and unfortunately our attendants and candidates were the ones who suffered from it.

“It was the boys’ responsibility and privilege to escort the girls,” Cathy said. “They were cheated out of that.”

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