After seven years of defeat, senior class claims float victory

On the senior float, senior Josh Fisher launches a lion to be catched by senior Janson Pilkington. The cannon, made by senior Drake Trent, was designed by cutting open a trash can. “We took a bungee cord, and then you pull it (a stuffed animal) down and it would launch,” Trent said. (Loganne Barta)

After seven years of defeat and a long Friday morning throwing their float together, the class of 2023 was surprised to hear they finally won the homecoming parade float contest. 

“I heard we won at the football game,” senior Zach Krajicek said. “I was happy because I usually do a lot of planning for the float every year and it just never works.” 

Krajicek said that in past years he was the one that planned the entire float and put it together with little help. However, this year the seniors all worked together.

Krajicek started with the plan, senior Will Peterson came up with the theme “Launch the Lions,” senior Drake Trent made a cannon, senior Janson Pilkington volunteered to dress up as a ringmaster and then the senior girls did the rest of the work.

Like previous years, most of this work was done Friday morning, the day of the parade. Senior Kennedy Andrews said she worked on it all morning.

“I helped brainstorm last-minute ideas like decorations and stuff,” Andrews said. “We had to find random supplies around the school and just come up with ideas to make decorations.”

When Andrews got to the float, there were only balloons and some leis on the float and the other seniors were working on a big banner. Although it was starting to come together, Andrews believed that something else was needed to really help the float stand out. 

The cannon shot out stuffed lions to go with the theme “Launch the Lions. ”

“I did the Ring of Fire, which went really well with Janson’s costume and then along with some of the posters since the huge banner didn’t work out,” Andrews said. 

Along with the “Ring of Fire”—a fiery hula hoop that the ringmaster used—another element that the seniors believed gave them an advantage was Trent’s cannon. The cannon shot out stuffed lions to go with the theme “Launch the Lions.”

“[Joshua] Fisher was launching the lions out of the cannon, and Janson was dressed up in a sparkly costume putting on a show,” Krajicek said. “There were also two more people following, catching the lions to return them.”

Krajicek said that the combination of the cannon’s looks and actually shooting the lions really put the float over the edge, and Peterson agreed.

“The cannon was the moneymaker,” Peterson said. “So was Janson in the ringmaster costume.”

While the float may have been very last-minute, the seniors were glad their work paid off at last.

“It was nice to finally win after so many years,” Peterson said. “We probably worked on the float less than in previous years. I feel like we had better years before, but we finally got it this year.”