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Williams Lake prepares to celebrate 2024 grads

Formal ceremonies, a parade and dry grad are all part of the plans
The 2024 Williams Lake Dry Grad Parade will take place Saturday, June 8, in downtown Williams Lake. (Williams Lake Tribune/Google maps graphic)

This year’s Williams Lake Dry Grad celebration takes place Saturday, June 8.

“We have 260 grads between Lake City Secondary, Skyline and Cariboo Adventist Academy,” said Dry Grad communications chair Kari Johnson.

While there is always a need for more volunteers, Johnson said the committee is appreciative of all the businesses and volunteers who have donated time and money toward this year’s festivities.

Some of the donations from businesses were used as prizes for a Bingo held at Williams Lake First Nation that raised money for Dry Grad, she said as an example.

Dry Grad Parade organizer Jen French said this year’s parade is going to be a big one.

There are lots of entries – everything from horses, tractors, wagons and a Zamboni even, she said.

Last year, there were complaints the parade moved too quickly so French has organized for her dad to lead the parade in a side-by-side to set the pace.

Grads will arrive at 4:30 p.m. for staging, the streets will be closed at 5 p.m. and the parade will depart at 5:30 p.m.

Forty members of the Williams Lake Gymnastic Club will volunteer to help with setting up the barricades and controlling the streets.

The parade route is similar to the route in 2023. It will depart as usual near the School District 27 office on Second Avenue and proceed toward Borland Street. The parade will then go east on Borland and make a left onto Third Avenue past the Cariboo Regional District office. The parade will then head east on Comer Street and then right again onto Fourth Avenue so the residents living at Cariboo Place Advantage Living can watch the parade as well, French said.

Once the parade is back on Borland Street it will continue to Boitanio Park which is often a very popular spot for families to take photographs.

French reminded the public there is no parking behind the Gibraltar Room.

Every parade entry will be given a ticket and be entered for a chance to win $700, which will be drawn once the parade is over.

“We’ve also rented a speaker and we will have music playing when everyone ends up at the back of the Gibraltar Room,” she said.

Following the parade, the festivities will continue at the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex until 2 a.m.

Rink 2 will be decorated for the prom to the theme of an enchanted forest.

There will also be activities such as a mechanical bull, which was popular last year, an obstacle course, yard games and more, while food will be brought into the complex throughout the evening.

“All the grads get a gift too,” Johnson said. “It will be amazing. They’ll have a great time.”

Thursday, June 6, the Skyline graduates will celebrate at 1 p.m. in the Marie Sharpe Elementary School gym.

On Friday, June 7, graduation ceremonies for Lake City Secondary School students will be held at Cariboo Memorial Complex Rink 1, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Cariboo Adventist Academy held its ceremony on Friday, May 31.

Monica Lamb-Yorski

About the Author: Monica Lamb-Yorski

A B.C. gal, I was born in Alert Bay, raised in Nelson, graduated from the University of Winnipeg, and wrote my first-ever article for the Prince Rupert Daily News.
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