By Jasmine Kim
Following a football win against Taft High School, approximately 1,550 Granada Hills Charter (GHC) students entered the Lost City to spend their Saturday night at the Homecoming dance on October 22. For many, this was their first Homecoming dance as the event was previously canceled due to COVID-19 restrictions.
Prior to the dance, the cheerleaders unveiled a banner as the Associated Student Body (ASB) announced the Lost City of Atlantis as the theme during a pep rally. Though there were mixed feelings about the theme, many students praised the decorations that included a tunnel with lights and still enjoyed the dance.
“Last year, all of our home games had zero fans, but it was good to have a Homecoming game where students and parents were cheering in the stands. The energy from the game carried over to the dance, and I had a good time with my friends,” senior Riley Nguyen said.
Students came attired in tuxedos and dresses and stood in a line before walking into the school. After the Homecoming proposals that were seen around campus, some people showed up with their dates, while others went solo or with a group of friends.
The Homecoming dance was filled with food, games, photos, and a lot of dancing outdoors in the quad. There were video games such as Mario Kart and glow in the dark games including air hockey, pool tables, and ping pong tables. Two photo booths were set up where students stood in line with their dates or group to capture their memories using fun props.
A quintessential part of Homecoming is crowning the Homecoming royalty. The final winners were seniors Elijah Kilgore and Jazmon Baytop as Homecoming king and queen.
“Winning Homecoming felt like I was living a scene from a movie. It sounds super cliche but I genuinely felt like I was not the type to even run in the first place. Everything was out of my comfort zone, but this experience challenged me to make more connections with people, get my name out, and really campaign in person, not just on social media,” Baytop said.
Though the rain sprinkled throughout the night, the positive wave of energy flowing from the DJ Gerrad O’Brien, who is better known as Lil G Music, kept most students on their feet on the dance floor. From Taylor Swift to Steve Lacy to the Weeknd, Lil G Music incorporated different genres and decades into his mix by playing throwback songs as well as the latest top hits.
“This dance in particular for me was electric. The energy that was shared that night was palpable in every way,” O’Brien said. “Despite the weather, the students partied like it was a scene in a movie! There was one part where I played a lot of throwbacks just to see which ones they knew, and they knew all of them. We just sang the songs back and forth to each other. I was listening to what they wanted to hear, and they were enjoying the energy I was bringing.”
For the $45 ticket price, along with games and photo booths, students received dinner and refreshments in the cafeteria. Many students were seen eating the pasta, salad, and chicken or standing in line at the taco stand.
For the first time in three years, students were able to enjoy one of the main events of the school year. All in all, the Homecoming dance set the stage for more exciting events later in the school year.
“This was my first and last Homecoming dance, and I’m grateful that I was able to have a normal but fun high school experience in my senior year,” senior Gavin Trainor said.