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1st Place Seniors

How did the WCHS seniors slay the competition Friday in the battle for best homecoming float?

They built a 54-foot long, fire-breathing dragon to reign over the Nunley Stadium kingdom and capture first place.

“We pulled an all-nighter and saw the sun come up getting all the finishing touches in place,” said Joe Anish, one of the main float organizers of the late push Thursday night that rolled into Friday morning. “I’ve wanted to make a float like this since I saw the dragon at the Harry Potter exhibit at Universal Studios. So many kids and so many parents were involved in making this happen. It was a tremendous group effort.”

Leftover PVC pipe from a demolished building was used to form the dragon’s frame. Then chicken wire was attached to firm up its shape. 

A 13,000-pound boom lift was used to allow the dragon’s head to be raised and lowered. It could reach a height of 28 feet. The flames were courtesy of a 100-pound propane tank.

It took five people inside the dragon to make it fully functional and five fire extinguishers were handy just in case something went wrong.

So was there ever any doubt the seniors would grab first place?

“The other floats didn’t hold a candle to ours. I knew we would win,” said senior Hannah Lee, who donned a dragon outfit to walk beside the float during the parade.

Added senior Justin Brantley, “They better raise their standards if they think they’re beating us.”

In addition to the float victory, it was an especially memorable night for two seniors as Rosemary Gutierrez was named Homecoming Queen and Angel Zarate was crowned Homecoming King. The two are a couple.

“I feel proud to not only represent the class of 2020, but to represent all of Warren County High School,” said Zarate, a member of the soccer team. “To win this with my girl really makes it nice.”

Gutierrez said the announcement was unexpected.

“I was very surprised and completely shocked,” said Gutierrez, who plays saxophone in the band.