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Homecoming spirit sweeps through Ahwatukee

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Posted: Tuesday, October 23, 2012 6:49 am

Thousands of students from Desert Vista and Mountain Pointe high schools concluded spirit week on Friday, ushering in homecoming with parades, a Hall of Fame induction, and pep assemblies.

Two separate assemblies in Desert Vista’s gymnasium Friday morning resembled the traditional parade with clubs like Deca, theater, dance and sports teams walking the gym floor with banners. The bleachers were filled with students from each class, sitting underneath dozens of homecoming posters.

Freshman and student council member Mackenzie Saunders said the excitement reeled through nearly everyone she knew at school.

“We’ve been working so hard for this,” Saunders said.

After about five people were inducted into Desert Vista’s inaugural Hall of Fame for sports, teachers and staff, the rest of the assemblies flowed smoothly, with performances by the dance team and a few stunts from Desert Vista’s cheerleaders, to a surprise, end performance.

About 20 teachers and staff danced to a choreographed routine to the popular song, “Gangnam Style,” followed by a roar of applause and standing ovation from students.

Over at Mountain Pointe, students and staff took to the football field and track Friday afternoon to see a traditional parade with “floats” from almost each club on campus.

Homecoming court, guitar club, the football team and more, including a “Gilligan’s Island” boat, drove past the outdoor bleachers.

“Homecoming is special because it involves the entire school community,” said Bruce Kipper, Mountain Pointe’s principal. “From alumni to local businesses to parents to current students and staff, it is a week-long celebration of our school’s history.”

Following in tradition, Mountain Pointe honored eligible seniors with a “Senior Walk.” Seniors with a 3.25 GPA, no history of serious or chronic discipline, participated in 90 hours of documented community service over the first three years of high school, and have been involved in two extracurricular sports or activities each year are chosen to be inducted. Only about 20 to 25 percent of the seniors qualify for this honor, Kipper added.

In addition to Desert Vista’s Hall of Fame, the school also recognized Dr. Joe McDonald, Eric Holden and the late Alex Teves into its Tradition of Excellence this past weekend.

For the students, homecoming is different than other school events, dances, or rallies.

“It’s just a magical night that happens once a year,” Saunders said.

• Contact writer: (480) 898-4903 or dmartinez@ahwatukee.com

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