Albeit masked, pomp and circumstance returns to Hugo Bolin Field

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A graduating senior exults after receiving his diploma in June 2019, (Rochester Voice file photos)

ROCHESTER - What a difference a year makes.

After a pandemic-driven drive-thru graduation ceremony last June, this year's rendition will happily return to the spacious confines of Hugo Bolin Field where the Spaulding High School Class of 2021 will receive their diplomas in traditional fashion on Friday afternoon.

A 2020 Spaulding High grad poses for pictures after receiving her diploma last June.

Despite the lifting of the mask mandate by Gov. Chris Sununu in mid-April, students and guests will need to be masked as required by the city school board, Spaulding High Principal Justin Roy said on Wednesday.

Other than that, Roy said he is looking forward to a traditional graduation ceremony that will look more like the 2019 iteration rather than last year when COVID-19 lockdowns were in place.

He said the families and friends of those getting their diploma on Friday can also expect to see fewer folk in the audience as each graduating senior was only allowed four tickets as opposed to the unlimited amount of guests usually allowed for an outdoor ceremony.

He said all guests will have to be masked at all times, while graduating seniors can take them off for photo ops after receiving their diploma.

The commencement address will be co-delivered by senior class advisers Stacy Horne and Kim Griffin, both SHS social studies teachers.

The ceremony gets under way at 6:30 p.m.

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