September 18, 2013 - By Maddie Stroin
LO Football fans at the Friday the 13 game against West Bloomfield sported their red, white and blue for the USA theme chosen by student groups at the high school. It was decided just this year to start dressing according to theme in the student section at the games. Joe St. Henry. (click for larger version)
Special Review Writer
Lake Orion High School loves traditions.
The band plays music in the commons on the days of home football games.
Seniors have the privilege of standing along the rail above the main staircase in between classes. Different groups spend time spray-painting the rock in front of the baseball fields.
This year the student body has started what is hoped to be a new tradition—a themed student section at football games.
Instead of wearing Dragon gear or green and white, the students sitting in the student section are now encouraged to dress according to a theme. Aquatic Night was the theme of the first home game on September 6. Kids came decked out in floaties, goggles, and even tubes.
This past Friday, the theme was USA. American flags flew throughout the bleachers and, stars and stripes were painted across students' faces.
The participation in these themed nights is impressive. With such a large high school, it would be easy to assume that some students would refuse to go along with the themes. Looking at the student section, lack of participation did not seem to be a problem.
When a theme is considered, it is sent to the LO Student Section Twitter account. The account is run by an anonymous high school student.
So many students scroll through Twitter everyday so the account has proved the best way to announce the theme each week. Last week, almost everyone was sporting red, white and blue. The themes unify all the students and display an overwhelming sense of school pride.
Unity and spirit were the intentions of this potential tradition. In past years a few students had attempted to theme the student sections at basketball and volleyball games. The Paint-Up Boys at football games also tried to follow a theme among themselves. These past attempts sparked the idea to determine themes for the student section at football games.
"We came up with the idea to get the whole student section involved and get everyone in the school together. The whole top part [of the student section] used to not do anything, so now if there's a theme everyone can be involved," senior Bridget Cuneo said.
Cuneo, the Paint-Up Boys, and a few other senior girls that help paint the boys had been working together to decide the themes. The Leadership class at the high school has now gotten involved. The Leadership E-Board, the Paint-Up Boys, and Cuneo all met and decided the themes for the upcoming weeks.
On Friday the team will travel to Stoney Creek High School. Students travelling to the game are encouraged to wear white to support the white-out.
The following week the team will be playing on Saturday at Ford Field where the theme is a blackout. For this game, the community as well as the students is encouraged to wear black.
Friday, October 4, the game is away at Rochester High School and the theme is western. The themes for the rest of the season are still being finalized.
Other than assisting in the development of the themes, the Leadership class at the high school has embraced the idea. The class is doing its best to match the LO Lotto themes for that Friday with the theme chosen for the student section. LO Lotto is a game played at the high school every Friday. A theme is chosen at the start of the week and the students must dress accordingly on Friday. At lunch, members of the Leadership class hand out tickets to students who participate. These students are entered in a raffle to win candy and gift cards. The LO Lotto theme for this past week was red, white, and blue to support the student section.
"LO Lotto is so uniquely Lake Orion. What a great idea if something can be the theme at the game and the LO Lotto theme," said Lori Hogan, Class Advisor of the Leadership Development Workshop.
Now, LO Lotto won't be the only thing uniquely Lake Orion. The student section will have other schools talking as people begin to witness the themes at away games.
It will be another thing that people think about when they hear the name 'Lake Orion'. Traditions do not only begin in Dragon Country; they thrive.