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The Tongva Times

The Tongva Times

The Tongva Times

Students revel in Homecoming fun

By Belle Nhan | Staff Writer

Yilin Yao| Tongva Times
ANTICIPATION The Homecoming Court watches the half-time fireworks display as Dr. Rynkiewicz, dressed as Aang from “Avatar: The Last Air Bender, Homecoming’s theme, takes a photo of the crowd.

   On Oct. 22, Gabrielino High School’s Homecoming dance was hosted by ASB at 7 p.m. in the quad. The Fall Sports Rally and Spirit Week took place in the days leading up to the event.

   “It is a yearly tradition that we have a new and unique theme for each rally,” explained the Commissioner of School Spirit, junior Vulena Xiong.

   This year’s theme was “Avatar the Last Airbender: Return to the Air Nation.” Each grade represented a different nation and element, with freshmen represented the Earth Kingdom, sophomores representing the Water Tribe, juniors representing the Fire Nation, and seniors representing the Air Nomads..

   “We not only wanted it to be Avatar the Last Airbender themed, but “Return to the Air Nation,” Xiong continued. “[The show’s content] symbolizes how we are working towards restoring Gab after being in quarantine for a year and are now trying to restore that sense of community and spirit among all students that we had before COVID struck.”

   The Homecoming Court, which was announced at the fally sports rally, consisted of freshmen royals Marco Cisneros-Farber and Aleena Marquez, sophomore royals Christopher Torres and Sherry Shi, junior royals Samantha Chen and Jonathan Liang.

   Senior princes were Darren Banh,Vincent De Marco, Huntington Co, and Howard Lee. The senior princesses were Helen Benitez, Kelly Hy, Jamilla Li, Maya Pourreza, and Sydney Soohoo.

   Soohoo stated, “[Being chosen] was really surprising, I never expected it.”

The homecoming king and queen were selected from the senior court and were announced at the game and dance. One of the senior princesses, Benitez was elected Homecoming Queen and senior prince De Marco was chosen as Homecoming King.

   Chemistry teacher Dave Cameron was selected as DJ for the dance. Students were allowed to request songs through a Google form.

   The homecoming dance also had photo opportunities with Clifford Photography. Pictures were sent back to the students through email.

   Two weeks before the dance, on Oct. 11, ASB hosted the fall sports rally. Previous rallies were held in the large gym, however, due to COVID-19 precautions, the rally’s location was changed to the quad.

   During the rally, the fall sports teams were introduced and the cheer team performed a dance routine to a remix of “Respect” by Aretha Franklin.

   According to cheer coach Bronte Ku and cheer captains seniors Emily Casciani, Lauren Chiou, and co-captain junior Hannah Patterson, cheer had to alter their routine to make it suitable for the quad.

   The rally also included a Class Clash competition game called the “Mastery of the Four Elements,” which was won by the juniors.

Yilin Yao| Tongva Times
CLASS CLASH Students from each grade level blow up balloons to knock down a row of cups during the Fall Sports Rally on Oct. 11.

   Oct. 18-22 was Spirit Week, which consisted of themed days where students were encouraged to dress in a certain style.

   Monday was Appa-jama day, so students wore PJs. Tuesday was Order of the White Lotus day, students wore floral patterned clothing.

   The next day was Kyoshi Warrior Wednesday, students would dress up as a villain, warrior, and or hero. Thursday’s theme was Agni Kai: Azula vs. Zuko, where students would wear blue and white or red and orange to show their support for Azula or Zuko, referencing a plot event in “Avatar: The Last Airbender.”

   On Friday, students would dress to represent their class and their element.

   Xiong stated, “Working with the office of School Spirit and the senior officers in ASB, we were able to put our heads together and come up with spirit days that relate to ‘Avatar the Last Airbender.’”

   Xiong continued, “We wanted to come up with spirit days that we know students would participate in and are convenient for them to dress up for.”

   Each grade level had a certain section of the school that they decorated for homecoming. Students were encouraged to participate in poster making.

   “Poster making sessions are important because while we are working hard to get what needs to be completed, it is also a bonding opportunity for students to gather with their fellow classmates,” ASB president senior Theresa Huynh stated. “It is a collaborative effort to spread spirit and pride at Gabrielino!”

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Students revel in Homecoming fun