St. John honors seniors with banners around city square

Fran Brownell

Courtesy of St. John Booster Club, pictorial banners honoring the 23 St. John-Hudson USD 350 graduating seniors are on display around St. John Square to give special recognition to the Class of 2020 whose anticipated end-of-school- year graduation ceremony and activities have been waylaid by COVID-19 restrictions.

“We’ve had plenty of compliments,” said booster club vice president Sara Fisher. “Parents and grandparents have oohed and aahed about them.”

Fisher said she had pondered on how to honor graduates whose senior year was disrupted by canceled year-end graduation events, including sports activities, which are the usual focus of booster club-funded projects.

“I asked myself ‘What in the world can we do to brighten their year?’” Fish- er said. “The idea of banners popped into my mind.”

Fisher broached booster club treasurer Kristel Meyer about the idea.

“Kristel shared my enthusiasm,” Fisher said.

Booster club president Jill Christie was also on board with the idea and took over the ordering process.

Fisher said the other booster club members Sarah Delp, Becky Reed, Alisa Fisher, Leah Alpers and Mandy Sanders all endorsed the banner project.

Both Fisher and Meyer are parents of graduating seniors, so the project became personal for them.

“We wanted it to be personal, not just for us, but for every senior and their families, who are honored by the display,” Fisher said.

The 18x36-inch banners were ordered online by Christie using the senior pictures from the school yearbook.

Fisher said there was no hesitation from St. John City Council members when they were approached with the request to honor graduates in this unique way.

“I think it was a fantastic idea,” said St. John Mayor Mark Bryant, who works as a para for USD 350. “My heart really breaks for the seniors, missing out on things that make graduation special.”

Fisher said city councilman Ryan Christie used his company’s Davis Elec- trical manlift to put the banners in place.

Graduating seniors whose banners are on display are Jaron Brittain, Whitney Brummer, Erin Crissman, America Fernandez, Trey Fisher, Collin Halling, Tanner Halling, Nevaeh Haney, Clayton Huston, Dayton Long, Riley McCandless, Bree Meyer, Andrew (AJ) Miller, Christopher Miller, Vanessa Moreno, Dalton Nemec, Joel Ortiz, Baylee Schrag, Destiny Talbot, Trevor Tanner, Jonathan Villanueva, Austin Woolf and Marshall Woolf.

The banners are expected to remain up through the end of May and then will be given to the students.