It was a night to remember late last month as 40 grads from the class of 2020 from South Delta Secondary gathered to mark their special milestone.
Unable to hold grad walks and traditional ceremonies this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Delta School District worked with GradsBC on virtual ceremonies for this year’s Delta grads.
But Tsawwassen moms Mellodee Rayne, Kim Bonn and Angela Jope wanted to do more to ensure that the grads had a deserving send-off. So on Friday night, June 26, a grad celebration was held at the Rayne’s home and in their neighbourhood cul-de-sac with a red carpet walk, a grad family dance, photo booths, a professional photographer, party games, fire pits, a sit down catered meal from Illuminate, fabulous 2020 cupcakes and candy bar and pizza at midnight.
Rayne said everything was in keeping with B.C. health guidelines and social bubbles.
“Generally the three of us got together to do this, but other parents did help with supplies,” said Rayne. “We let the neighbours know we would be doing this and got their permission to not park on the street, so the red carpet could be put out. Many of those neighbours came out, social distanced and watched everything, so that gave a lot of people a lot of joy and we received a lot of great compliments. Even the senior homes up the street came out and remarked how wonderful it was to see.”
Rayne said Illuminate went above and beyond as did other parents.
“Tsawwassen moms and dads rock. We are a very supportive and encouraging community and have shown our kids there is nothing we can’t get through,” said Rayne. “We approached the school board twice with different ideas that we thought they could be a part of and that they could be a leader on it, but they kyboshed the ideas. We thought it would be great for the grads to have banners alongside 12th Ave. It would have been so cool to have the grads up on banners or other signs on 56th Ave. They really didn’t put any effort into other than the virtual ceremony, which I’m sure people appreciated, but that wasn’t going to be enough for us.
“Everyone shared in this…parents and grads. It was all very safe and all the parents were made aware and supported the social distancing and the health guidelines. We just felt that this class deserved to be honoured and respected. They just deserve the best and that’s what they got.
She said what made the event so special was that it was really community-driven.
“The comments and compliments that we got from the neighbourhood through the last week…I believe that this will set a precedent from the graduation classes to come. I think this is something that could always be done in your own community. It can belong to the parents more, rather than just the school doing it.”