From honoring the Homecoming Court to watching the Friday night football game, Homecoming Week throughout the years has included countless exciting and traditional events. At St. Peter’s College, Mount Carmel Academy, and Catholic High School, Homecoming Week has been a time to celebrate alumni and school spirit. Although some traditions have come and gone, the feelings of nostalgia and pride have remained central in one of the most exciting and busy times of the year.
Since the beginning of St. Peter’s College, Homecoming has been an important event for everybody. The Homecoming Court has been an important role in this exhilarating week since its start. Due to St. Peter’s College (SPC) being an an all-male school, the court was elected from its sister school, Mount Carmel Academy. When SPC was renamed Catholic High School (CHS), and moved to its current campus, it continued to be an all-male school until 1987. During this momentous year, Catholic High School allowed girls to enroll; therefore, CHS was finally able to elect a Court from its own school. Today, the Court has evolved into a group of twelve senior girls who compete for the title of Homecoming Queen. The queen is announced at the annual Homecoming Football Game after they are introduced to the audience and walk down the field. Each year the queen is crowned based on popular vote, interviews with faculty and classmates, and involvement in extracurricular activities. This will forever be an event that all young girls at Catholic High School strive for.
(Above) The Homecoming Court of 1960 posing for a picture.
(Above) The members of the 1974 Homecoming Court smile for the annual court picture.
(Above) The 1981 Court posing for a picture.
(Above) The 2001 Homecoming Court reaching for the crown on the previous year’s Queen, Janie Eldridge.
(Above) Queen Natalie Derouen, first maid Raven Shexnayder, and second maid Cassie Champagne stand with their escorts at the 2009 Homecoming football game.
(Above) Principal Ray Simon and 2009 Queen Natalie Derouen crown 2010 Queen Abigail Henagan.
(Above) The 2016 Homecoming Court posing for a picture.
Since the beginning of Homecoming, the Homecoming Parade has been a celebrated event. This special Homecoming event has allowed St. Peter’s College, Mount Carmel Academy, and Catholic High School to enjoy parading through the city of New Iberia to show off their pride in the Homecoming Court and football team. The front of the parade consists of each Homecoming Court member’s vehicle. The traditional firetruck that carries the football boys follows shortly behind. The parade proceeds throughout the city of New Iberia, eventually reaching Main Street. Once the parade returns back to campus, typically, the bonfire is lit by the Senior football players.
(Above) A float from the 1952 parade carries a sign stating that “this game is in the bag,” in reference to the upcoming football game.
(Above) A member of the 1953 court riding in the parade.
(Above) Students work on a float for the 1981 Homecoming Parade.
(Above) Senior football players ride on the top of a firetruck during the 2009 Homecoming Parade.
(Above) Varsity and junior varsity football players ride on a float in the 2011 Homecoming Parade.
Homecoming Football Game
The Homecoming Football Game is one of the main events that occurs during Homecoming Week. The game typically begins on the Friday of Homecoming Week, after the fun activities are finished. Throughout the week there are many competitions between the classes, but the football game allows the entire school to come together and support the team. During halftime the Homecoming Court is presented on the field for observing families and friends. The football game brings current students and alumni together to one place, showing that many people continue to support the panthers even after graduating. As Catholic High student Kaiden Burgess stated, “The football game is the best part to end a great week of homecoming, my favorite part is cheering in the stands with all my friends.”
(Above) The football team fights for a win during the 1983 Homecoming game.
(Above) Queen Susan Terrell receives flowers from Principal Robert Gandara during the 1987 Homecoming Game. Susan Terrell was the first student of Catholic High to be chosen as Homecoming Queen.
The Homecoming Pep Rally is one the most anticipated pep rallies of the school year. This event has always occurred the day of the Homecoming Football Game to present the Homecoming Court to the student body, and cheer on the football team. This pep rally still involves cheering on the team while incorporating class competitions and games for the rest of the school’s pleasure. Overall, this is the time where the entire school comes together to have fun during the Homecoming Week.
(Above) Mount Carmel and Catholic High cheerleaders perform during the 1983 pep rally.
(Above) Football players watch the 1987 Homecoming pep rally.
(Above) A group of sophomores cheer in the bleachers during the 2010 Homecoming pep rally.
The Catholic High Bonfire was a staple Homecoming tradition from when it started in 1951. During the bonfire, all the Senior football players light a torch, make a procession, and then light the wood. When it started it was an event for all of the Catholic High family to attend together. Eventually, this event was cancelled due to fire hazards in 2005, but returned during the fall of 2017. Now, it is an event that all students, faculty, family, and friends can attend to witness the lighting of the fire, eat food, and socialize.
(Above) Senior football players waiting to light the annual bonfire.
(Above) Catholic High School’s traditional bonfire being lit for the 2016 Homecoming week for the first time since 2005.
The Gender Games was first started in 2012 as a competition between Junior and Senior boys versus Junior and Senior girls. The goal was to cover the other gender in the most amount of food and cause the most mess. Examples of food that were used in this event include chocolate, flour, pudding, and countless other soft foods. At the end a firetruck would come and try to clean off some of the mess from the participants. The event ended in 2015, and it was replaced by Key Club’s Paint Wars. This is an event that all high school students can participate in.
(Above) The 2012 Junior girls throwing flour during the first annual Gender Wars.
Powderpuff is an event that started in 2007 for Senior and Junior girls to play a friendly game of flag football. This game was used as a way for the high school girls to work together for a common goal: beating the other team. This event is till put on today for the same purpose. After hours of practices and preparation, Senior and Junior girls are able to show off their athleticism and have fun while doing so during this entertaining event of Homecoming Week.
(Above) Junior and senior girls battle it out during the 2009 Homecoming powder puff game.
Manther is Catholic High School’s annual volleyball game where Junior and Senior boys compete against each other. This first time this event was held was Homecoming of 2010. During this joyous event, Junior and Senior boys fight for the winning title of the volleyball game. Manther continues to be one of the many cheerful events held during Homecoming Week at Catholic High School.
(Above) Junior and Senior boys playing volleyball in the annual Mather volleyball game.
The first annual Paint Wars was held during Catholic High School’s 2016 Homecoming Week. It was an alternative to the standing tradition of the Junior and Senior Food Fight. For the paint wars, the Freshman and Sophomore class compete against each other, slinging sponges soaked in paint and water guns filled with thin paint. However, the main event is the war between the Juniors and Seniors. The ferocity between the two classes is quite a site to see.
(Above) Sophomores and Freshman throwing paint during the second annual Paint War.