05-28-2020 Hartford seniors will graduate with a bang Friday night, parade and fireworks will follo

TAPS ACROSS AMERICA… Brad and daughter Alyson Wendzel are pictured playing taps in their backyard on Memorial Day. The national grassroots campaign to play “Taps Across America” at 3 p.m. was in response to the widespread cancellation of traditional Memorial Day observances due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Hartford seniors will graduate with a bang Friday night, parade and fireworks will follow virtual graduation on Facebook

By Jon Bisnett

As the first of the Tri-City schools to graduate, the Hartford Senior Class of 2020 will definitely see a unique spin on traditional commencement pomp and circumstance including fireworks.

Hartford High School administration made the hard decision weeks ago to proceed with graduation on its originally scheduled date of May 29, 2020 as a virtual graduation in reaction to the COVID-19 restrictions. Although some folks found this an initially unpopular call; with several additional embellishments that have since been added, the non-traditional celebration should prove to be a memorable backdrop to honor the accomplishments of the Class of 2020.

Hartford administrators started with a personal visit to each and every senior’s home to deliver a custom Class of 2020 yard sign.

Facebook Live ceremony on Friday

Hartford’s Virtual Graduation Ceremony will be Live on Facebook at 7:00 p.m., Friday, May 29. The entire Hartford community is to join in a Senior Send-Off salute. At 8:45 p.m., after the graduates gather in their respective vehicles at the Hartford Bible Church, the seniors will take a processional drive down Red Arrow Highway, turn left on N. Center Street, then a right on School Street, and ending in the Middle School parking lot. Seniors are encouraged to wear their cap and gown and decorate their cars for the procession.

This provides an opportunity for well-wishers in the community to join in celebrating the Class of 2020. Immediately following the Senior Send-Off will be a fireworks show, with one shell fired for each member of the class, leading up to the grand finale.

Important to note is, only seniors may park in the Middle School lot to view the show launched from the softball field at 9:15 p.m. Additional community members may park in the High School lot.

For the evening to be a total success, social distancing guidelines must be maintained. Both the Hartford Police Department and Fire Department with assist in supervising the event.

MONUMENT BACK HOME IN COLOMA… Workers from St. Joe Monument installed the newly refurbished Vietnam War Memorial at the recently renovated Baker Park in Coloma. The names of eight Coloma veterans who lost their lives in Vietnam are memorialized on the stone first dedicated in Baker Park on April 21, 1990. Those eight are also being honored with banners on Main Street that will fly in good weather in 2020 and be hung again for the rededication of the stone in 2021. Renovations to Coloma’s Baker Park on Main Street include a circle of cem