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Almost paradise

She's enjoying school so much she doesn't want to leave

She's enjoying school so much she doesn't want to leave

November 11, 2007|By ERIN CUNNINGHAM

HANCOCK - She bought the white and black dress in September, but said the best accessory came in October - a tiara.

Hancock Middle-Senior High School senior Stacey Pittman was named Alsatia Princess, but the 17-year-old said winning the title was not a popularity contest.

"I didn't think I was going to get it," she said.

It was Stacey's first time being named to the school's homecoming court.

"I wasn't expecting it," she said. "I rode in a car in the Mummers Parade with girls from other high schools."

Before being named a princess, Stacey began planning for her school's homecoming dance and for the activities leading up to the football game. As student council vice president and president of the senior class, she has been busy planning for homecoming since her junior year.

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The theme. The decorations. Spirit week activities. Stacey helped plan it all. Stacey expected the hard work to pay off for her and her classmates at the dance, which was Saturday night.

The theme called for "leis, lots of colors, tiki torches," she said.

At the end of the last school year, the student council decided the theme for this year's homecoming dance would be "Almost Paradise." The school's gymnasium resembled a luau during the dance, and on Waikiki Wednesday, students wore leis and dressed in Hawaiian gear.

The dance originally was going to be held outside, in true Waikiki fashion, but Stacey said the date was pushed back, and students decided it would be too cold to have a luau in November.

Stacey has attended every homecoming dance since her freshman year, and helped plan and organize most dances as a member of the student council. She's been involved in student government since middle school.

She said the students at Hancock are "very creative people," and the dances always are a success.

While Stacey said she enjoys being behind the scenes, decorating and planning for the school dances can be stressful at times.

"Anything can happen," she said.

Spirit Week

Leading up to the homecoming dance and football game, Hancock students participated in spirit week, a tradition that Stacey said is becoming more popular as students' pride in their school grows. Maui Monday, mix-and-match day, pajama day and Waikiki Wednesday all were part of getting students excited about the homecoming game and Hancock Middle-Senior High School.

"When it comes to spirit week, a lot of people get really into it," she said.

One of Stacey's goals, and the goal of school Principal Eric Michael, is to increase school spirit.

While many students were looking forward to the homecoming football game to show their school spirit, Hancock's female students didn't have to wait. Senior girls competed against junior girls in a powder puff football game on Nov. 6. It was the first time the powder puff game has been played in many years, Stacey said.

Stacey said she had been looking forward to competing, and after the seniors won the game, she was thrilled.

"Football is one of my favorite sports," Stacey said. "I like playing with the guys. But this is like flipping it. It's something a lot of the seniors wanted to do."

She also enjoys watching football, and said she rarely misses her school's games. And in Hancock, it's sort of the routine, she said.

"Everybody goes to the football games," Stacey said.

During Hancock's homecoming game, she was announced as the Alsatia Princess. Before the game, Stacey said she was looking forward to it. She'll be recognized as part of homecoming court, and she said princess is the runner-up to homecoming queen.

On Saturday, Stacey said there wouldn't be much time to get ready for the dance. She was to work at The Lockhouse Restaurant in Hancock until 4 p.m. that day, and said she wanted to make it to dinner with her friends before going to the school for the 8 p.m. dance.

This year, Stacey chose to go to homecoming without a date and spend her night with a group of friends.

"It's senior year," she said. "You just want to have fun with your friends."

And it's starting to hit her, and some of her friends, that this is their last year of high school, and their last homecoming dance.

"It's flying by," she said. "I'm excited. But there's part of it ... I don't want to leave high school."

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