by Dara Tucker & AJ Gold
Staffers debate graduation at Kehler Stadium.
by Dara Tucker
Graduation is one of the highlights of the school year. However, in order to benefit students, parents and school staff, WHS should hold graduation at Kehler Stadium.C
Currently, graduation is held on the softball field, which is problematic when the weather does not cooperate. If it were to rain in the time leading up to graduation, the field would be muddy, which is undesirable for family and friends to sit in as well as for students to walk through. On the turf at Kehler, this would not be an issue, since family and friends would be sitting in the stands and turf is resistant to water, unlike the softball fields.
Kehler Stadium also creates a better experience for spectators, since it is much more aesthetically pleasing than the softball field. Watching the graduates walk across the turf with the blue block “W” underneath them would represent the school pride and spirit that Westfield is known for and serve as the seniors’ culminating moment. In addition, more seating in the stands at Kehler is an added bonus.
Graduation is a time when the community comes together to celebrate the accomplishments of the graduating class. If WHS wants to enhance the overall experience, then holding graduation at Kehler is a smart choice.
by AJ Gold
Many WHS seniors are currently advocating to hold graduation at Kehler Stadium this year, as opposed to the softball field, where it is held almost every year. While having graduation at Kehler may be better for the audience, the preservation of tradition and the problems that the turf would bring should be enough to render this proposal illogical.
Making the switch to holding graduation at Kehler would tarnish a historic tradition. The softball field is smaller, but what’s most important is how many WHS graduates have received their diploma on that field before us. Switching to Kehler would end a proud custom that’s lasted for decades.
But this isn’t even the main concern; it’s the turf. While it is always hot on the softball field in June, imagine having to sit on the turf instead. With the sun reflecting off the turf, it’s guaranteed to be sauna-esque—actually 10 degrees hotter. Furthermore, the installment of hundreds of chairs for graduates and staff on the turf, where several WHS sports are played, could pose a threat to the field itself, wrecking the $1.38 million investment that went into it, according towestfieldnj.com.
Clearly, the benefits of holding a traditional graduation outweigh graduation at Kehler.