Invermere council okay with ‘reverse grad march’ idea

Nothing finalized and complications aplenty, but Invermere council agrees to grad march idea

By Steve Hubrecht

steve@columbiavalleypioneer.com

Options for local high school students to do some sort of grad march are being discussed, although nothing is certain, there are plenty of complications, and David Thompson Secondary School (DTSS) has not given a final go-ahead of any sort. The tradition of DTSS grade 12 students parading down main street dressed in their graduation best stretches back quite some time, but earlier this spring it seemed as though the COVID-19 pandemic and the social distancing protocols it entails would cancel the custom this year.

There is now a chance that perhaps, just maybe, a type of grad march could be staged with appropriate social distancing, following a decision by Invermere council to close 7th Avenue (Invermere’s main street) to traffic for a potential ‘reverse’ march. The decision came during Invermere’s Tuesday, May 24 committee of the whole meeting, after council received correspondence from a parent representing the 2020 DTSS grads. The parent outlined the plan for the ‘reverse march’ and asked council to consider shutting down main street to traffic on Wednesday, June 24 for the march.

There are plenty of complications, however, that could throw a wrench into the works of any potential ‘reverse march,’ not least an order amendment from provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry on Friday, May 22, which limits the number of vehicles at drive-in type events (including concerts, movies and high school graduations) to no more than 50 vehicles and imposes other restrictions. CBC reported earlier this week that the amendment has scuttled plans for a drive-in graduation ceremony at Mt. Baker Secondary School in Cranbrook, leaving organizers there searching for other options.

The ‘reverse march’ plan in Invermere — if it does in fact go ahead — would, instead of having the students march down main street in couples, see the couples standing along 7th Avenue, appropriately spaced apart, with spectators driving by in their cars in a loop circling south along 10th Avenue, east down 13th Street, and then north up 7th Avenue (past the grads). The time for the march would be shifted to a bit later than usual, so as not to interfere with the business hours of local shops on main street, and would be from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. The parent’s email mentioned that another potential idea which was turned down by the RCMP due to safety concerns, was to have spectators stand along main street as usual, while students went past standing in the back of pickup trucks or on floats.

Council enthusiastically supported the idea of a ‘reverse march’ at the May 24 meeting, with councillor Gerry Taft calling it “awesome” and council agreed to close 7th Avenue, if the march does go ahead.

File photo from 2019 grad march

Just Posted

Video invites visitors back to valley

Chamber video says: “Hey, hey! Come back and play, play.”

Invermere deer ‘hoofs’ woman and dog

Aggressive deer incidents increase this year, as woman and dog left bruised and injured

School District 6 nominated Summit Youth Hub for award

Hub nominated for a B.C Principals’ and Vice Principals’ Association (BCPVPA) Partnership Award

Invermere library reopens for summer

Summer Reading Club and Pop-up Story Time return

B.C. sees 25 new COVID-19 cases, community exposure tracked

One death, outbreaks remain in two long-term care facilities

BREAKING: Amber Alert for two Quebec girls cancelled after bodies found

Romy Carpentier, 6, Norah Carpentier, 11, and their father, Martin Carpentier, missing since Wednesday

B.C. man prepares to be first to receive double-hand transplant in Canada

After the surgery, transplant patients face a long recovery

Grocers appear before MPs to explain decision to cut pandemic pay

Executives from three of Canada’s largest grocery chains have defended their decision to end temporary wage increases

RCMP ‘disappointed’ by talk that race a factor in quiet Rideau Hall arrest

Corey Hurren, who is from Manitoba, is facing 22 charges

NHL’s Canadian hubs offer little economic benefit, but morale boost is valuable: experts

Games are slated to start Aug. 1 with six Canadian teams qualifying for the 24-team resumption of play

‘Made in the Cowichan Valley’ coming to a wine bottle near you

Cowichan Valley has the honour of being the first sub-GI outside of the Okanagan

VIDEO: Vancouver Island cat missing 18 months reunited with family

Blue the cat found at Victoria museum 17 kilometres from home

VIDEO: Alberta man rescues baby eagle believed to be drowning in East Kootenay lake

Brett Bacon was boating on a lake in Windermere when he spotted the baby eagle struggling in the water

Most Read