It’s `The Grand Finale’ for Class of ’99 |

It’s `The Grand Finale’ for Class of ’99

Aspen Times Staff Report

Aspen High School’s 87 seniors in the Class of 1999 will graduate tomorrow afternoon in a 2:30 p.m. ceremony with “The Grand Finale” theme, at the Bayer-Benedict Music Tent.

Amanda Boxtel, director of Challenge Aspen, will deliver the commencement address to the 17- and 18-year-old seniors about to embark on another chapter of life, whatever that might be. Traditionally, commencement speakers are individuals who, like Boxtel, have demonstrated a commitment to the Aspen community.

Class valedictorian Alana Monge and class salutatorian Christy Hunter will both have the opportunity to address their classmates during the ceremony.

Dozens of scholarships, worth several thousand dollars, as well as faculty recognition awards for leadership, service and the like, will be awarded to graduates during the ceremony.

The commencement is typically two hours long. At its conclusion, congratulations will be exchanged in front of the Music Tent, following the recessional.

Aspen High School has held its graduation ceremonies at the Music Tent for more than 20 years and the ceremony itself has become a town event. And, it has its own favorite traditions, like the practice of presenting Superintendent Tom Farrell with a little something – like a goldfish in a plastic bag – in exchange for a diploma. The practice dates back to Farrell’s arrival here 11 years ago.

Tonight, Aspen’s “second baccalaureate service” will take place in the Aspen High School Commons, from 7 to 8 p.m. Sponsored by the Aspen Interfaith Association, the service will honor graduates-to-be and will affirm that a spiritual dimension to this rite of passage exists. Students, family and friends and the community are welcome.

The service will include brief presentations by 10 community religious leaders, as well as music by high school students.

Seniors at the Colorado Rocky Mountain School in Carbondale will also graduate on Saturday. Seniors from Roaring Fork School District schools (Basalt High, Roaring Fork High, and Glenwood Springs High) graduated last weekend.

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