With fall sports coming to a close, “Senior Nights”—the flowers, the speeches, the balloons, and the tears—are in the air. Let’s rewind our clocks to when it first began.
Five years ago, when Athletic Director Denny Lennon came to Archer, he decided that Archer sports should recognize their seniors. Together, Coach Lennon and Coach Kristen Benjamin started this tradition.
Coach Lennon told the Oracle that these celebrations evolve and improve every year. For example, he believes that involving the other team’s seniors during the ceremonies is a nice thing to do. The idea for that segment came from other schools involving us in the past.
At Archer, the importance of recognizing and celebrating the graduating athletes as the season’s end is essential. And as Lennon says, “the tradition has grown in the past 10-15 years in schools just in West L.A.”
The celebration isn’t restricted to the team. Lennon emphasized how it is a community event. Parents, fellow students, and fans all come out to participate in the festivities. The emotion makes it special.
Lennon has worked at schools where they didn’t do senior night the way Archer does now. He explained that they have one cumulative banquet at the end of the year as opposed to recognizing individuals at the end of each season. He feels that these individual celebrations are more memorable and special.
Of course, ultimately, it is not how you recognize and celebrate the commitment the athletes have, but the fact that you do.