With record unemployment and a quickly shrinking economy, the loss of many beloved and long-held local events, and the widespread fear, uncertainty, sickness and even death associated with the novel coronavirus, 2020 is unlikely to go down in the history books as a “banner year.”
But for the Canby High School Class of 2020, it is, at least in the literal sense. Custom banners celebrating the senior class went up this week in downtown Canby and at Canby High School.
“There are not many of us that know how the last couple of months have impacted you,” Canby Mayor Brian Hodson said to the Class of 2020 on Facebook. “What we do know is that you all persevered through adversity.”
The banners are the result of a grassroots effort of high school parents and staff, who were inspired by similar projects across the country, many of which include seniors’ names and photos.
That was also the original idea here, but there may not be enough light poles in all of Clackamas County to accommodate Canby High’s graduating class of 400 students, and the logistics of trying to collect written consent from that many families and students quickly proved unworkable.
Instead, the city’s banners include the words “Canby Loves Our Seniors” on one side, and specific messages honoring the Class of 2020, including part of the annual group shot on Cougar Field. The 30 signs are trimmed in the traditional blue and gold of Canby High.
Twenty larger banners have also gone up at Canby High School, where the Class of 2020 messaging is less prominent, since the school plans to reuse them every year. However, these signs still acknowledge the roots of the tradition starting with this year’s seniors and their unusual graduation rites.
The banners were printed by Canby Signs & Graphics, and paid for through leftover funds from the previous class’s graduation celebration, which is why both versions of the banners say they are a “Gift from the Class of 2019.”
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