Homecoming week for the Hermiston Bulldogs comes to a close today with the last, and what some would call the most important, activity, the dance.

I hope you have a date, but even if you don’t, you should go and celebrate the week you’ve had.

Homecoming week is always one of the best weeks of the year for high school students. The sporting events, the extra-curriculars, the pageantry and, yes, the aforementioned dance combine to create a festive atmosphere rarely equaled at any other point during the school year.

As you get older, you grow nostalgic for the times that have faded into memories. That happened to me Thursday night when covering the Hermiston Bulldogs’ volleyball game.

It was Dig Pink night, to support breast cancer awareness, and seeing an entire student section dressed head-to-toe in various pink garb brought a smile to my face.

I was reminded of what it meant to be in high school. It’s about dressing up in festive clothing and supporting your sports teams. It’s about coming up with clever but clean chants to shout at your opponents from the stands. It’s about having as much fun as you possibly can while you’re there. As the capture-the-mask game after the soccer match Tuesday, the dodge ball event after the volleyball match Thursday,and the other countless opportunities students had to enjoy themselves.

We live in 2013. There are more distractions now in the form of reality television and the internet than there has ever been before. Young people have to contend with more junk uselessly filling their heads, thoughts and time than we ever did.

Yet, somehow, there remains hope. At least for this week, I saw students putting all of those other things craving for their attention on hold in order to enjoy the festivities in front of them.

It was a refreshing change from the digital world that now enslaves us, and it was a reminder to us all that we can still function with out being glued to a television set or stuck in a world that exists solely on our computers and iPhones.

This week made me wish there was more of this activity to go around. Why does it need to be limited to homecoming week? Why can’t students be this involved with their school and their athletic teams all the time. The passion exhibited by the student body at that volleyball game showed me it was possible. After all, it sure looked like a lot of fun. Isn’t that the point?

Think about that tomorrow.

Tonight, enjoy the dance. Guys: Don’t forget the corsage.

—Zach Beehler is the sports reporter for the Hermiston Herald. He can be reached at zbeehler@hermistonherald.com

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