A Happily Ever After Homecoming

On Oct. 9, Rock Ridge hosted its first outdoor homecoming dance on the football field, inspired by a Disney theme. In the 40’ x 110 tent, snacks, refreshments, corn holes, a photo booth, a life size chess board, DJ, and a seven foot inflatable movie screen playing Disney movies for attendees to enjoy.


Mars Foley

Senior Kylie Miller sings along to the music with her peers. The dance floor filled as the DJ played songs like “good 4 u” by Olivia Rodrigo, and “Baby Shark” by Pinkfong.

Nanaki Bawa, Karis Adnan, and Mars Foley

On Oct. 9, SCA hosted its first ever outdoor homecoming. The dance, usually held in the gym and cafeteria, was held on the football field under a tent to allow for a larger area due to COVID-19 concerns. The tent is presumed to be the biggest in the county to SCA sponsor Michelle Menna’s knowledge. “[Our tent] was 40’x110,” Menna said. “Some schools may have had the same size as ours, but I do not believe that anyone had one bigger than that.” 

Per usual, refreshments, snacks, DJ, dance floor, and games were offered as well as a new addition — an inflatable screen displaying Disney movies featured outside the outdoor tent. The photo booth was also available where students could have their pictures taken with the provided props. 

Many students liked the unique theme and additions to the dance. “I think [the decor] was really well done for the outdoors and brought people a little more into the land of Disney,” junior Hannah Adnan said.

Homecoming was also a chance for students to connect with friends that attend different schools. “My favorite part was when my friend from Riverside [High School] was able to attend as a guest; prior to the dance, I hadn’t seen her in person since she moved schools during freshman year,” junior Sydney Pascual said.

According to Menna, the planning that went into the event was “more [work] than ever before” for the SCA, and included keeping track of the permission clicks, online ticket sales, and county paperwork. But, Menna says that she enjoyed “seeing the event come together” on the night of. “I’ve never felt so much excitement and admiration for the dance,” Menna said. “It all came together better than I hoped and it looked truly magical being outside with the tent and the decorations.”

Future outdoor homecomings are a possibility, but the difficulties of planning an outdoor event, including weather unpredictability, remains an important factor. Additionally, an outdoor homecoming is more expensive, so the early ticket prices may rise to $25 if this format is continued into next year. “If we keep it outside, I would like to continue to have the tent, dance floor, DJ, and movie screen that we had, and perhaps add more games and even more lights,” Menna said.

Selling 1,032 tickets, the school’s first outdoor homecoming dance attracted many for a night of music, dancing, and games. “I am so glad that we were able to have the dance, and that it all came together so well,” Menna said. “I am extremely proud of all the work the kids put in to make it a success and am so glad that everyone seemed to enjoy it and that the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.”