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Warman High School rolls through pandemic graduation

Click to play video 'Warman High School rolls through pandemic graduation' Warman High School rolls through pandemic graduation
WATCH: During the pandemic, any high school graduation is bound to look different than normal. One Saskatchewan community took this to heart and truly rolled out the red carpet for the class of 2020.

Warman High School’s traditional graduation ceremony was cancelled more than a month ago, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, leaving their Grade 12 students without a formal way to celebrate their achievement.

But that didn’t stop a group of parents who banded together to organize a two-day celebration that included a parade and a degree presentation on the track at Wyant Group Raceway.

Read more: Coronavirus: Saskatoon high school students embrace unique graduation ceremonies

“We get a parade, and we get a raceway, and it’s so exciting,” graduate Aimee Owen said. “It’s so much cooler than sitting for three hours in an auditorium.”

“It takes my breath away,” twin sister Raina Owen echoed. “I can’t even explain it, it’s amazing.”

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Read more: Winnipeg high school students graduate with a drive-through amid pandemic

Raina and Aimee’s mother Janice played an integral part in her daughters’ graduation, as part of a parent-driven committee that made the 2020 Warman High School graduation a reality.

“I just couldn’t live with myself if they didn’t have an option to do anything to end twelve years of school,” Janice said. “They needed to have that finality, that good-bye with their friends.”

Click to play video 'Class of 2020 finding new ways to mark graduation amid coronavirus pandemic' Class of 2020 finding new ways to mark graduation amid coronavirus pandemic
Class of 2020 finding new ways to mark graduation amid coronavirus pandemic

Wyant Group Raceway graciously offered their facility to the graduates, knowing how important an event it is in any teen’s life.

“We’re all apart of the community,” Wyant Group Raceway marketing director Neil Schneider said. “We always want the track to be focused on that, and to be a focal point within the community. That’s something that we’re always striving for.”

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Click to play video 'TMS Graduation Celebration: June 24, 2020' TMS Graduation Celebration: June 24, 2020
TMS Graduation Celebration: June 24, 2020

From the potential of having no graduation to one of the most unique and exciting graduations ever, the Owen girls are deeply appreciative of the work put forward by both their mother and the rest of the committee.

“I’m so happy that she’s done this,” Aimee said. “I remember right from the start, she’s like, ‘no matter what we are going to do something.'”

Read more: Student questions why restaurants and bars reopening, but venues for grad ceremonies not

“I remember her going through all of the things, what we could do,” Raina added. “Thinking, ‘hey the racetrack,’ then thinking, ‘nah, that’s not going to happen, that’s not going to work.’ Then [when] it does work out, it’s just — I can’t put it into words.”
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