Pugh, Clark Reign Over E-Hawk Homecoming
Emmetsburg High School Alumni Abby Goodlaxson drew a standing ovation as she told the crowd at Emmetsburg High School’s Homecoming coronation Thursday night to be proud of their E-Hawk heritage everyday.
Goodlaxson, who graduated in 1994, reminisced about some of the faculty members who influenced her life in Emmetsburg, including current staff members Kari Schany, Sue Strube and Jennifer Thayer, as well as many acquaintances and friends from her own school days.
“I reached out to some alumni and some faculty a few days back to ask the question, ‘What does it mean to be an E-Hawk?” Goodlaxson said. “I found these answers very interesting and I’d like to share them with you. Shawna Paskert-Harris, Class of ’88 wrote ‘An E-Hawk means to show pride in winning or losing; it also means never giving less than 100 percent and pushing yourself to be the very best – never settling.”
Goodlaxson continued. “Matt Schmidt, Class of 1990. ‘Being an E-Hawk is about continuing the tradition of excellence. Pushing yourself to improve and be a part of something great and learning lessons on the way that you didn’t realize at the time that will make you a better person.”
Goodlaxson then quoted current faculty member Anna Fiene. “Annie Burdorf-Fiene, Class of 1990 wrote ‘Being an E-Hawk means pushing yourself when no one else is around. You are a part of something great, much bigger than yourself. Accept your role and do whatever you can to help the team.”
“Julie Hand-McDonough, class of 1993, wrote, ‘Being an E-Hawk means you expect to excel at whatever it is you set your mind to. It’s winning with grace and losing with dignity, but then working hard to win the next time. It means you always have your teammates’ back, on and off the court or their field and it’s being proud stating you are from Emmetsburg, no matter where you end up in the world.”
Goodlaxson paused for a moment. “And as I look back, being an E-Hawk is all about pride and loyalty and tradition and building relationships with the teachers you have, classmates, the staff, coaches and community. Like the old saying goes, once an E-Hawk, always an E-Hawk. It’s about being present, making memories to last a lifetime and cherish this town and the people that make it great. There is no better place to grow up than in Emmetsburg.”
After having the Emmetsburg Cheerleaders join her on stage to lead two of her favorite cheers, Goodlaxson walked to center stage, produced a $10 bill and asked, “who wants this $10 bill?”
Hands shot up throughout the auditorium and from the Homecoming court seated on stage as Goodlaxson held the bill in the air. “Well, come get it!” she called out. Suddenly, three students rushed the stage, with Jordan Lange racing across the stage to grasp the bill.
“Good for you!” Goodlaxson said as the crowd buzzed over the action. “Jordan took a risk,” she said, explaining how she teaches a course to her students in Okoboji about dreaming about what they want to do in life.
“We talk about how important it is to dream at such a young age,”?Goodlaxson said. “I ask the kids, ‘What ?do you want to do? What is your passion? Add that with the goals you have. Is it enough to just sit in a corner and do nothing about it? You can dream all day but you’re not going to get there. You have to do something about it.”
“So, that’s the risk that Jordan took to come and get that $10 bill,”?Goodlaxson said. “Too often, what do we do? We say we want something. Whatever dreams you have, whatever passions you have, whatever goals you have, go get them. Attack them with enthusiasm.”
Goodlaxson concluded, “Follow those crazy dreams and take the risks to get there. Make memories, be proud of where you are from, build relationships and continue to make Emmetsburg great. Walk these halls with pride!”
The coronation program opened with the cheerleaders leading the audience in the school song, played by the EHS Marching Band, under the direction of Ms. Holly Prier. The cheerleaders performed a dance routine before Kayla Joyce EHS?Student Council President, introduced the Homecoming court.
Freshman Class attendants were Raven Brown, the daughter of Abbey Brown and Brett Hoyman, the son of Steven Hoyman and Tammy Williams.
Sophomore Class attendants were Alexis Louwagie, the daughter of Thad Louwagie and Tonya Louwagie and Nick Schany, the son of BJ and Jill Schany.
Junior Class attendants were Natalie Kliegl, the daughter of Rhonda Kliegl and Jackson Knight, the son of Mike and Tricia Knight.
Serving as the crown and flower bearers for this year are Brooklyn Fiene, the daughter of Jason and Anna Fiene and Bric Joynt, the son of Jarrod and Tristan Joynt.
Joyce then introduced the King and Queen candidates. Kate Jackson, the daughter of Brian and Mary Ellen Jackson and Brent Wesley, son of Randy and Amy Wesley; Malissa Nieman, the daughter of Randy and Linda Nieman and Carson Clark, son of Lisa Zurmely and the late Kent Clark; Sarah Pugh, daughter of Matt and Joann Pugh and Max Dunlap, son of Mike and Julie Dunlap and Natalie Ruiz, the daughter of Gerard and Kristen Ruiz along with Will Schany, son of BJ and Jill Schany.
The honor of crowning their successors fell to the 2015 Homecoming royalty, Katie Hoffman and Wes Schultes. Hoffman took the crown and took her time perusing the four candidates before placing the crown on Carson Clark’s head to cheers from the crowd. As Clark moved to center stage, Schultes took the queen’s tiara from Broc Joynt and carefully held the tiara over each contestant’s head before gently placing it on Sarah Pugh as the crowd again erupted in cheers and applause as the royal couple were seated center stage.
A performance of “O Sifuni Mungu” by the EHS?Concert Choir, under the direction of Mr. Luke Miller, followed the coronation ceremonies before the EHS?band played the recessional “O Danny Boy” as the Homecoming court retired from the stage.
Following the coronation ceremonies, a fundraising auction of the varsity football jerseys, along with an autographed game ball and special end zone seating package for the Homecoming game were auctioned off by Auctioneers Brent Mehan and Jim Reding to close out the evening’s festivities.