Unique graduations in store for the Class of 2020

Kristina Blüm Justice
Staff Writer

Inyo County’s Classes of 2020 may have had the most unconventional senior year in recent memory, but the communities they call home are wrapping them in love as they spread their wings for their next adventures. Each school in the county has come up with a unique way to honor their graduates.

Death Valley
Death Valley has one graduating high school senior this year. A drive-by celebration will take place at the school at 7 p.m. today.

Lone Pine
In Lone Pine, there will be a small, private graduation ceremony with all the necessary COVID-19 precautions on June 12. However the rest of the community is invited to celebrate the graduating seniors with a Main Street cruise at 5:30 p.m. Friday. The Lone Pine High School Class of 2020 will be decorating their cars and cruising up and down Main Street. The community and alumni are invited to join them, in keeping with an old Lone Pine tradition that hasn’t happened in a while, according to the school. The students will each be given a monetary gift to spend at businesses in Lone Pine, to celebrate their accomplishments while helping give back to the local economy.
The seniors may also cruise through town and their neighborhoods prior to the June 12 private ceremony.

In Independence, there will be a drive-by graduation at the school. Owens Valley High School has eight graduates, and six of them will be participating in the event at 6 p.m. today. Each graduate will be in the back of a pickup truck at the school. There will be a graduation ceremony, however, families of graduates will be given priority.
The Owens Valley eighth graders oped to wait to have their commencement at a later date.

Big Pine
In Big Pine, there are two high school seniors and 12 eighth graders graduating this year.
“The graduates will be in a caravan going through all the neighborhoods in Big Pine, and we’re encouraging the community to come cheer them on,” said Audra Huston, school secretary.
The caravan will take place beginning at the Big Pine park at 5:30 p.m. today.
The caravan will drive through all the neighborhoods in Big Pine, including the Big Pine reservation. Residents and businesses are invited to decorate their yards or storefronts in honor of the Big Pine graduates. Signs are available at Carroll’s Market

The community of Bishop is going blue and white Friday for the Bishop Union High School graduating Class of 2020, and everyone is invited to come cruise Main Street in celebration.
The seniors, wearing their caps and gowns, will start their procession at the Bank of America building, heading south to Line Street, where they will cross and walk north to Looney Bean. Meanwhile, parents, friends and well-wishers are invited to cruise up and down Main Street.
Everyone is invited to decorate their cars in blue and white if they would like to do so.
Last week, the BUHS Associated Student Body invited businesses in the Bishop area to decorate their storefronts in honor of the Class of 2020.
The Corona Cruisers, who have been cruising Main Street every Saturday night during the pandemic, will be part of the festivities, and local DJ Mark Vincent will have a sound system set up to announce the names of all the graduates.
Prior to the high school graduation cruise at 7 p.m. Friday, the eighth graders graduating from Home Street Middle School will walk Main Street as well, beginning at 6 p.m.
Any eighth graders who would like to participate should meet at the back of the City Park at 5:45 p.m.. High school graduates should meet behind Union Bank at 6:45 p.m.
Anyone who would like to support the eighth graders is invited to decorate their car in Home Street Middle School red.