The History of Homecoming

The marching band is one of the highights of the annual homecoming game. Photo courtesy of Chamblee Marching Band.

Ah, homecoming. Spirit week, the pep rally, the game, and finally the dance have been Chamblee traditions as far back as we at the Blue & Gold have kept records — that is to say, quite a long time. As you may be able to imagine, any institution with such a storied history has had its fair share of ups and downs. Here, as compiled from the Blue & Gold’s archives, are some of the biggest events and changes in our homecoming history.

1959: The first Chamblee powderpuff game was played. This was the first time that C(C)HS girls played football.

The 1980s and ‘90s: There was a full-fledged homecoming parade featuring floats, the marching band, and “convertibles carrying various Chamblee officials”; each grade would make a float that related to a theme, which was judged during halftime of the homecoming game. Each senior football player chose (“sponsored”) a girl to be on the homecoming court, and the homecoming king was chosen based on applause at the pep rally. Even the spirit week themes were different: “Pajama Day” was almost unheard of, and “GQ/Cosmo Day” — when students would come to school in suits and dresses “worthy of a night at the Oscars” — was common.

1982: The float theme was “Decades”: the seniors won with their space-age 60s float, and the sub-freshmen (eighth graders) chose the year 2010 (featuring a “robotic football player on a lunar surface”).

1988: The local band “East meets West” performed at the dance and was reportedly the highlight of the night.

1996: Student Government (SGA) experimented with having each club decorate a hallway, rather than each grade. (They returned to class-decorated halls the next year.)

1998: Homecoming was on the day before Halloween, and the homecoming game was scheduled for Saturday night, so the dance was on Friday for the first time. The queen was announced and crowned at the dance.

2000: The homecoming dance tradition of checking your shoes at the door and dancing in socks was ended.

2004: The powderpuff game was brought back after being discontinued for four years due to disorganization and “total chaos.”

2009: Vandalism, extreme decoration destruction, and general rambunctiousness during spirit week (including an attempted food fight, an “altercation” between a student and an administrator, and “a rumored broken window”) caused the powderpuff game, tailgate, and homecoming pep rally (and with it the homecoming king) to be canceled, amid widespread student outrage.

2011: Chamblee had its first boys’ homecoming court (with boys nominated by clubs and voted on by the seniors); before, SGA had picked the homecoming king, and before that, the nominees were chosen by the senior cheerleaders and voted on based on applause at the pep rally.

2015: The girls’ homecoming court decided not to campaign except for a few posters; in prior years, potential queens had passed out cupcakes, candy, and pencils at school in an attempt to win votes. They felt that not campaigning made the court friendlier and less aggressive.

2017: SGA has brought back the hall decorating contest for the first time in several years.

 

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