Behind the scenes of Homecoming 2017

As students entered the field house on Homecoming night last Saturday, they saw the gym beautifully decorated for this year’s theme of “Home of the Brave.” Stars and stripes adorned the walls, confetti bestrewed the gym floor, and throughout the week USA-theme music rattled through the halls.

A multitude of students attended the lively evening devised by Interact club, Naperville North’s largest service organization. Senior Manasi Lingamaneni, the club’s public relations manager, explained why she chose to become involved.

“I really enjoy setting up because I feel like it’s a way that the community can connect in one place and show school spirit. It’s really fun, especially seeing how it all comes together on Saturday night,” Lingamaneni said.

Armed with staple guns and ladders, members worked after school on Friday adorning the gym in red, white, and blue. The theme was organized to honor 9/11, which fell on Monday of homecoming week.

According to Interact club’s sponsors, Abby Walter and Ryan Hall, homecoming decorations have transformed the dance into an event that has less to do with what is hanging on the walls, and more to do with the experience.

“I’ve seen a huge transformation from when I first stepped on to now. We have evolved to be focusing on what the kids really want, and that tends to be the special effects with the lighting, sound [and] confetti,” Hall said.

The club’s board members began planning long before homecoming week, organizing important elements such as the theme and student prizes well before the school year began. Each year they try to improve from the year before, discussing plans to move forward soon after the dance ends.

According to Walter, the board was pressed to start preparations early for the upcoming year, as the dance would take place about a month earlier than usual.

“They started working on it last spring… getting everything together, contacting all the people that had to chip in,” Walter said. “Ever since we got back they really had to kick it into high gear to make things perfect and ready to go.”

After the hard work is done and the decorations are set up the night before, members of Interact club celebrate.

“When you see the entire part of the field house full, and the kids are jumping and dancing, then it makes all the stress worth it,” Hall said.