North Olympic Peninsula public school district graduation ceremonies will be closer to normal this year than last as restrictions loosen against COVID-19, although face masks and social distancing are still required.
High school graduations are planned on Friday and Saturday in Clallam and Jefferson counties.
• Port Angeles High School — 7:30 p.m. Friday. The largest district on the Peninsula will have 225 seniors graduating this year.
Gates will open at 6 p.m. at Civic Field, 307 S. Race St. in Port Angeles, said Carmen Geyer, district communications and community relations coordinator.
Students will walk across the stage to receive their diplomas.
All will be required to wear masks and practice social distancing. Tickets provided to families and friends by students will be needed for entry.
A livestream of the event can be viewed at www.youtube.com/watch?v=VOhNtFcrY74.
• Lincoln High School — 6 p.m. Monday. Twenty-eight graduates will be honored at Peninsula College in the field just south of the Pirate Union Building, 1502 E. Lauridsen Blvd., Port Angeles.
The entrance will open at 5:15 p.m. All will be required to wear masks and practice social distancing. Attendees must be on a guest list to enter.
• Port Angeles Senior Parade — A non-school-sponsored senior parade will begin at 3 p.m. Friday. Staging will begin at 2 p.m. Friday at Ediz Hook Road.
Any graduating senior of Port Angeles, Lincoln or Seaview schools can attend. A parent driver is required. One car per family is allowed.
Geyer said she is glad the seniors will have a more traditional graduation again but also welcomes seeing the continuation of the senior parade, which parents began last year.
“It feels wonderful,” Geyer said. “We’re so grateful to offer this to our graduating students and family members and friends who have helped get these kids to the finish line.”
• Sequim High School — 6 p.m. Friday. Between 187 and 195 seniors will receive diplomas in an outdoor ceremony at the Sequim High School field, 601 N. Sequim Ave.
Each graduating student was issued four tickets for families and friends to attend the ceremony; graduates will accept their diplomas in the stadium grandstand while ceremony attendees watch from the field.
All will be required to wear masks and practice social distancing.
The school will host a livestream video of the ceremony at vimeo.com/553889613.
“I know the students are really looking forward to it after last year,” said Ann Tjemsland, office manager at Sequim High School.
• Crescent High School — 5:30 p.m. Saturday. Crescent School District will honor 12 graduating seniors.
Unlike last year, when admission was limited to just a few cars, this year’s ceremony will be outside at 50350 state Highway 112 in Joyce.
It will be on the school track with a stage, according to the district’s website, www.csd313.org.
Graduates will face south in front of the bleachers.
Seating is limited. Families anticipate needing about 180 of the 250 seats that will be set up, the district said.
Seating will be opened at 4:45 p.m. on a first-come, first-served basis. Face masks and social distancing are required.
Seating will be to the west of the bleachers and east of the play shed and space for people to sit if they bring their own camping-style chair on the outskirts.
Covered seating is limited. Audience members are urged to bring umbrellas. For video of the ceremony, go to https://youtube/p5MMl3S93LY or https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCrFp7u5SBWqgWiU8MDFjGMw.
• Forks High School — 2 p.m. Saturday. Some 78 seniors will be given their diplomas in a ceremony outside on the Spartan Stadium.
“Right now, that’s the four-hour window of when it’s not supposed to be raining,” said Superintendent Diane Reaume.
If it does rain, umbrellas will be in evidence.
The seniors “want it outside rain or shine,” Reaume said.
“It’s possibly a new tradition of being outdoors. In the rain,” she added.
Last year, it was a drive-though ceremony, but this year, each senior has been given four tickets for family and friends.
Today, staff will place tennis balls on the legs of chairs at 261 S. Spartan Ave. so they don’t damage the artificial turf.
“We just want it as normal as possible,” Reaume said. “It’s been a long year for our seniors, and we want to send them off, telling them we love them and we hope for better days ahead.”
• Neah Bay High School — 6 p.m. Friday. Thirty-four students will get their diplomas at the football field at Neah Bay High School, 3560 Deer St.
Each senior was given 10 tickets for families and friends to attend the outdoor ceremony.
In addition, some 60 staff members will assist with greeting and seating, resulting in about 400 people on the football field, said Michelle Parkin, superintendent of Cape Flattery School District, which includes Neah Bay and Clallam Bay high schools.
Only those with tickets can attend in order to assure social distancing, she said. Face masks will be required.
“The high school has done a wonderful job of organizing together with the tribal emergency operations center to make sure that all state and tribal safety precautions are built into the graduation plans,” Parkin said.
Families be seated in two pods, she said.
“This is the largest gathering we’ve had since everything shut down,” Parkin said, adding it would be a big celebration.
• Clallam Bay High School — 2 p.m. Saturday. This is the only high school graduation ceremony on the Peninsula that will be held indoors. The nine seniors will be honored in the gymnasium at the school, 13193 state Highway 112 in Clallam Bay.
Each senior was given 15 tickets for families and friends to attend the ceremony. Only those with tickets can attend in order to assure social distancing, she said. Face masks will be required.
Parkin praised the staff for their work in organizing the event.
“They’ve had to work with students and families to offer in-person graduation to make sure everyone is aware of protocols that need to be followed.”
Both graduation ceremonies at the Cape Flattery schools of Neah Bay and Clallam Bay are “completely different than what we experienced last year with virtual graduations,” Parkin said.
And both are graduating 100 percent of their senior classes.
“During the pandemic, not one senior fell through the cracks,” Parkin said.
“I’m excited about that.”
Check the district website at https://www.cfsd401.org/ for youtube videos of the ceremonies.
• Port Townsend High School — 7 p.m. Friday, Memorial Field, 550 Washington St. in Port Townsend, 87 seniors.
• Chimacum High School — Noon Saturday, Memorial Field in Port Townsend, about 30 seniors.
• Quilcene High School — 2 p.m. Saturday, Quilcene Football Field, 294715 U.S. Highway 101, 23 seniors.