BATTLE RISING: New traditions at the forefront of Battle High's first Homecoming

Saturday, October 19, 2013 | 11:28 p.m. CDT; updated 2:22 p.m. CDT, Sunday, October 20, 2013
Battle High School had its inaugural Homecoming dance Saturday night.

COLUMBIA — "Spartans — What is your profession?" Battle High School cheered at its first Homecoming celebration with a new chant at the football game Saturday.

Students of Battle High School created new homecoming traditions this weekend, including a Homecoming court, a new chant and the school's first dance theme, "007 — Spartans... Battle Spartans."

The new chant debuted at the Saturday afternoon football game against the Normal Community West Wildcats. It came from a line by Gerard Butler's character in "300." The chant emulated a scene from the movie when the Spartan army chanted in unison to show that they would fight as one.

"Ahoo, Ahoo, Ahoo," the fans responded together.

New Homecoming traditions like these have been surfacing throughout the week, and students have been at the forefront of creating them. 

Ari Sanchez, a junior who participated on the Homecoming court committee, said switching to Battle High school gave him "more opportunities to be in student leadership." 

Since this is the first year of the school, students in the Homecoming court committee had to create a system for electing the Homecoming kings and queens for the freshman, sophomore, and junior classes. There is no senior class at Battle High School, so next year the Homecoming king and queen will be picked from the first senior class, Sanchez said.

Students applied to be Homecoming royalty, and those selected were voted on by the student body during lunch and Spartan Time. Thursday students voted only on the royalty in their selective grades, Sanchez said. Friday they voted for royalty in every grade.

Sanchez also said there were about 30 people in multiple committees involved in creating the school's first Homecoming from start to finish. 

"We had to go to meetings in the morning, and I am not a morning person," said Sanchez. "It took us a week to decide how we would choose our candidates."

New traditions also included an assembly on Friday, where students battled other students and teacher in games and obstacles.

"We had to run down the court with a basketball, spin our heads around a bat 15 times, and then go down and do a lay-up," sophomore Omar Hayes said. 

The student body also prepared for the first ever Homecoming dance from 8 to 11 p.m. Saturday .

Kara Miller, a Battle High School sophomore, wished the event would start at 7 p.m. so that students could have more time to dance.

Miller, along with a group of other students, planned to get ready after the football game. Some had dates, but many chose to go with a group of their friends. Students from other schools are allowed to attend as long as a student from Battle High School filled out the form and turned it in to the assistant principle's office. 

David Seifert, a sophomore at Rock Bridge High School, attended the Battle football game and planned to attend the Homecoming dance. He was asked to attend by a Battle student, and that student also plans to attend Rock Bridge's Homecoming dance with him as well.

Many students at Battle transferred from schools in the surrounding area. Tonight, the high schools will blend in a memorable first dance.

Sophomore Camille Branham said twerking would be the hot dance move of the night. Surrounding friends agreed, along with mentioning "the wop" and grinding. Branham also stated the necessity of having good music for the dance to be successful. 

"It's really awkward dancing in front of your teachers," Branham said. 

It was also all laughs when it came to attire. "I thought you were serious when you sent me that text," Seifert said to a fellow student on his decision to wear a bowtie to the dance tonight. 

But Sanchez agrees with Seifert's decision. "After they said '007' I immediately thought of bow ties. I love wearing bow ties. It's a classic look, more formal," Sanchez said.

Supervising editor is Zachary Matson.

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