It is time to move the high school graduations indoors at Vicksburg Convention Center

Published 9:03 am Friday, May 5, 2017

Traditions are important. They are often things that tie generations together, are handed down from one family member to the next and are often accompanied by cherished memories.

Traditions, also at times, run their course and need to be retired.

One such tradition that needs to be retired is the practice of using high school football stadiums for graduation ceremony venues.

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With the unpredictability of Mississippi weather, trusting such an important event to the whims of Mother Nature is simply a risk not worth taking.

Before, administrators at Vicksburg and Warren Central High School would have as their back-up plan using school auditoriums and gymnasiums for graduation venues if the weather turned ugly.

And, when forced indoors, school leaders were faced with the difficult decision of limiting the number of family members who could come inside to view graduation.

If only Vicksburg had a facility that could be used each year to host graduations, give the schools the room they need to host such large events and give families room enough to bring a few more folks with them to enjoy the festivities. If only such a place exists.

It does.

And, this place not only has the means to host such an event as graduation in a professional manner, and has the experience in hosting large events, but has proven it by hosting graduation ceremonies in the past.

The Vicksburg Convention Center is that place.

School board members would be wise to adopt a policy that removes the worry and the unpredictability of hosting graduation outdoors. They should — beginning with the graduating class of 2018 — choose to have both the Vicksburg High and Warren Central High ceremonies at the Vicksburg Convention Center.

Doing so on separate nights, would give each graduating class the treatment and facility their big moment deserves, without having to worry about weather or what family members to quite literally leave out in the rain.

The convention center is a tremendous asset for Vicksburg and Warren County and one the school board should see as an asset as well.