Graduation Memories

Graduation season is upon us once again – time to reminisce about graduation time, whether it be high school or college or an academy.

Here’s a picture of our graduation announcement.  Me, being a procrastinator sent my announcements out late.  My uncle scolded me telling me that he had to cancel plans late after he received my graduation announcement.  Ooops.

Photo courtesy of Scott Moody

Our graduation theme song:

Our graduation program:

Photo courtesy of Scott Moody

The anticipation of getting ready for the big entrance:

Photo courtesy of Scott Moody

And the grand procession (cue music – Pomp and Circumstance):

Photo courtesy of Scott Moody

I thought it was sad that we had to graduate on our field whereas the last 8 or so years graduating in the HIC.  But looking back – I’m glad we were able to graduate on our home turf.  Much more meaningful.

Photo courtesy of Scott Moody

And when it was all over – that meant looking for your “letter” to meet family and friends.  Check out the huge carnation lei:

Photo courtesy of Scott Moody

Man, talk about relief!  Even though thousands of kids do it every year – it was such a momentous occasion.  The closing of a huge chapter in your book of life.  Thirteen years of going to school from 8:00 in the morning until 2:00 in the afternoon – Over and done with!


What are your graduation memories?

Here’s one from me.  This picture was from the graduation announcement.  My name was somehow left out from the main list of graduates and I was listed under a section called “Additional graduates”.

My uncle asked me “What, they weren’t sure you were going to graduate so they had to add your name in late?”.


23 Responses to “Graduation Memories”

  1. KC fan says:

    Graduated from McKinley High class of 1977. Think the late Loyal Gardener was commencement speaker. Call I remember was joints being passed around, fireworks going off and my friends giving me booze. Grad class was more than 700. Good times.

  2. Mark Shelby says:

    I graduated McKinley in 1973. We had a huge senior class, I think over 1,000. All I rememba is they made us wear those horrible black robes and then go stand outside on the steps of the main administration building in the hot sun.

    We were supposed to walk down to each individually receive our diplomas, but somebody screwed up and it was announced that the diplomas would be mailed to us. Idiots!

    GOOD! Made that hot stay in da sun much shorter!

    There were way more people on the lawn than on the steps. The crowd on the lawn went all the way back to King Street!

    Then all the lies and the kissing! I had leis up to my nose! LOL!

    And more cards than I could fit in my pocket.

  3. Rodney says:

    I recall that our class was proposing that our tassel be red, white, & blue since we were the bicentennial class. That broke tradition of a blue and white tassel. But we kept tradition – albeit it was a light blue/white tassel – whereas all the other years it was dark blue/white.
    Kept my tassel and hung it from my rear-view mirror for a number of years until it became all faded.
    Good thing I ordered two. lol

  4. 4G says:

    Piggybacking on that gown/cap thing . . .

    Ours were maroon – nylon, intended one-time use thingies.

    I was trying to remember what I wore underneath, but just can’t remember. 🙁

    I liked the graduation tassel. I thought that it was the best “momento” of the event and intended to keep it. Of course, it was fastened on the cap.

    One of the things I remember about the graduation ceremony was the ending. We, the graduates, let out a hearty cheer. A bunch of us threw our caps up and out into the air. The caps seemed symbolic of the formal K-12 experience. Goodbye and good riddance! LOL

    I distinctly remember removing the tassel before throwing the cap. The bummer is, within a year, I would somehow end up with the tassel in the wash. It ended up being ruined. 😉

    My mom was not pleased that I did not have my cap. Upon meeting at the letter sign after the ceremony, she asked, “Where’s your cap?”. I replied, “I threw it”. She didn’t say anything but her displeasure was evident. 😉 LOL

  5. Rodney says:

    Here’s a graduation song (way after our time):

  6. KAN says:

    Our graduation gowns were maroon. At Castle, the classes were supposed to cycle between maroon, white and gold, and I’m pretty sure my class was supposed to wear white. We broke with tradition (we broke with a LOT of traditions–we lost homecoming to the juniors, among other things) and the gods took their revenge on us by DUMPING rain onto the field. I was soaked by the end of graduation, and the field was a mud wallow. I got so many lei that I had to lean over to dump them off twice. I still have some of the ribbon lei given to me on that day (mostly because they were SO HUMBUG to make that I treasure them).

    • KAN says:

      I’m pretty sure our song was “Graduation Day,” which was an old song by the time we chose it, but I think we couldn’t be bothered to think of something more original.

      I’ve heard flowers are more scarce now, which is why lei are harder to get and more expensive. And maile is almost impossible. Fewer people are willing to do the work to grow them. Hawai`i General Store in Seattle sells lei, and they’re getting harder and harder to get. (I’ve heard Costco sells lei up here during graduation season, but even they’re having a hard time getting them.)

      • Rodney says:

        We broke tradition too, beside graduating on the field, we had disposable gowns – in light blue. All the years prior had used the school’s dark blue cotton gowns which they had to return. I think they got to keep their hat.

        I think I still have my disposable gown. LOL

  7. Seawalker says:

    LOL, stoned eh? As in Stone Temple Pilots?

    Well, it was MC Hammer at ours. Don’t remember buying the baby Lowenbrau, but do remember passing them out. It was so bloody hot with all them people showing up and the leis piled on. On top of that, we were in neckties.

    Funny, I remember getting a red carnation lei for graduation. Carnation was so 70’s and 80’s. Kept only that buggah on at the grad parties later on that night. Glad I did. Or maybe I was glad the carnation wasn’t eaten as pupus to go along with the Lowenbrau. 😆

    Nice topic @Rod! Looks like you pulled a rabbit out of the hat on this one. Listed under additional graduate? Should have told your uncle, because that list was for both the upper 10% and NHS only. For sure he goin’ know you stay lying. Hehe

  8. M says:

    I was stoned during the ceremony. lol and got more stoned after. lol

  9. Keoni says:

    Happy World Turtle Day

    Remember to protect our honu!

  10. Izsmom says:

    I think my graduating class had about 500+ and I don’t think we had a commencement speaker because we didn’t want the program to be too long, but someone must have forgot to tell the 2 co-valedictorians, their speeches were boring and long! It was at Roosevelt’s stadium, and it was tradition to have it on a Friday night at 7:00pm, I don’t know when they switched it to Saturday evening instead. Our class colors were orange and yellow…I know weird combo…And our song was You’ll never Walk Alone.

  11. sameguydifferentchannel says:

    Wow, a carnation lei in the last photo. Do they still sell those?

  12. sameguydifferentchannel says:

    We graduated a year after @sally at Waikiki Shell. Without looking at the program, I can’t remember who delivered our commencement address.

    Our class colors were burgundy and white, and we sang “You’ll Never Walk Alone.”

    I remember it being HOT on the risers onstage, facing a sun that was blaring down at us.

  13. 4G says:

    I don’t remember too many specifics about my high school graduation ceremony. I don’t remember the speaker nor the class song.

    The ceremony was on campus. Kind of like @dihudfan, it was in that central courtyard (he called it the amphitheater – I think by my time, it was referred to as the quadrangle.

    I want to say our class was like 930 or 960 strong. It was probably the last really large graduating class since the next year was the first graduating class for Moanalua High School.

    I didn’t want to participate in the ceremony but was coerced into it “for grandma and grandpa”. 🙁

  14. Keoni says:

    I thought my graduating class was big at 125, but when I see numbers of 800-1000, it just boggles my mind!! We had our graduation in the Hershey theater, the largest venue in town at the time. Our colors were Kentucky Green and White and our class song was “What Kind of Men are We?”, written by members of the class of 1965. (Milton Hershey School at that time was all male)
    I was the only member of my family to graduate high school. My next oldest brother eventually got his GED. I remember my mom was so proud of me. As I mentioned in the past, my diploma is in Candy Making, a course that is no longer offered at Hershey, sadly. I know that one of the guys who took that course and wen grad a few years after me opened and ran a candy shop in York, PA. But I ended up in Banking of all things!! I haven’t made candy for years. 🙁
    Anyway, those are my graduation memories.

  15. Kage says:

    I do not remember who was our commencement speaker. Our song was Searching So Long by Chicago.
    Our class colors – Blue and Silver
    We had a class of a tad over 300 with a tad under 300 graduating.

    Leilehua Mules Class of 1985!!

  16. dihudfan says:

    FHS amphitheater … almost 1000 in our graduating class… 900 something anyway… Climb every mountain…

  17. sally says:

    Waikiki Shell. Pogo Poge was our commencement speaker but I don’t remember a word he said.

    My Hawaii was our class song, Blue and White our class colors.

    Classmates Richard Natto (Toma/Natto) and Ivan Lee did a mashup of Won’t Last A Day Without You and My Hawaii. Love how Richard had so much faith in his classmates (700 of us!) to harmonize LOL!

    To this day, we sing it at karaoke to REPRESENT!

  18. sally says:

    Graduation Day… BeachBoys

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