CALUMET CITY | Thornton Fractional North students piled into the gym for a kickoff to homecoming weekend festivities at the close of the school day Friday afternoon.
The Meteors, divided into groups based on class, were treated to performances from the band, color guard, dance team and cheerleaders. The culmination came when five faculty members took cream pies to the face at center court.
Athletic Director Dale Pietranczyk introduced the event, but juniors Daniel Alvarez and Rhea Bradfield emceed it from start to finish.
"I like to be involved with the school, get the school spirit up," Alvarez said. "I volunteered. We kind of lack school spirit."
Alvarez and Bradfield, both student council members, were given two days to prepare.
"One day at meeting, they were just like 'Rhea, you're hosting it,'" Bradfield said. "This is the most that you will ever catch me being loud, other than in the hallways, in my room, in the shower, but if I have other opportunities, I will definitely take advantage."
Bradfield said she enjoyed the experience and would love to do something similar for a career.
"I'd love to be a talk show host, news, BET, anything," she said. "That's me. That's what I want to do."
The homecoming court was also announced. Jeremy Baldwin and Leslie Owens were two of the senior class's representatives. Baldwin said he asked friend to nominate him in the hopes that he could be named king.
"I think it would be a great accomplishment for my senior year," Baldwin said. "It'd be another chapter in my life."
Owens was nominated against her will, she said.
"If feels good to know that people actually know me and would nominate me," she said. "But at the same time, I don't want to be in the spotlight. That's just not my thing."
Owens said if she wins homecoming queen, she may try to find out who was responsible for her nomination.
"It's going to be weird," Owens said. "I'll probably try to get them back for doing that."
Court member Adrian Gutierrez, also a senior, said his nomination was validation for the hard work he's put in during his time at TF North. Gutierrez said he's been involved with 12 different clubs since his freshman year and has even won a few school-related awards for leadership and dedication.
"I really didn't have a lot of friends when I was in grammar school, so when I got nominated it was a shocker," he said. "I've done a lot to get to this and I've done a lot for the school."
The weekend continued with Friday's football game against the Hillcrest Hawks and the dance tonight.