Charles Bloom Secondary graduate Julianna Sawatzky spray paints Cop Hill in Lumby as a the old tradition is revived Thursday, June 4. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)

Charles Bloom Secondary graduate Julianna Sawatzky spray paints Cop Hill in Lumby as a the old tradition is revived Thursday, June 4. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)

North Okanagan grads leave their mark in 2020

Old tradition of spray painting Cop Hill revived as traditional graduation ceremony curbed by COVID

Despite many graduation traditions being cancelled due to COVID-19, one tradition came back to life in Lumby.

Ditching their cap and gown, the Charles Bloom Class of 2020 picked up disposable gloves and spray paint Thursday, June 4.

In small groups spread out over the afternoon, the grads flocked to Glencaird Street, otherwise known as Cop Hill, to leave their mark.

Names, COVID tags and art coloured the street between Shuswap and Park avenues, which were closed for the occasion. It’s a tradition that took place years ago in Lumby but hasn’t happened in many years.

“Our principal told us about that I think it’s pretty cool that they brought it back,” said Julianna Sawatzky, while decorating her nickname, Jay, on the road.

While there’s been a lot of change for the Grade 12 students, who aren’t able to take part in traditional grad ceremonies, they were still smiling to be part of something special Thursday.

“They are doing the best that they can,” said Sawatzky, of the teachers and grad committee. “They are doing a really good job of it.”

But it hasn’t been easy trying to complete assignment and schoolwork without classes in session.

“It’s been a little bit stressful but it’s the best that it can be with online,” said Sawatzky, who is going into nursing at UBC Okanagan.

But before the grads turn to the next chapter in life, Lumby has one more special event for the graduates and community.

A parade will make its way around town Friday, June 2, starting at 6 p.m. in Lumby, where grads will be able to sport their formal wear and be celebrated by loved ones.

READ MORE: Road closed for Lumby grads to paint Cop Hill

READ MORE: Enderby grads celebrated in social distancing ceremony


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Charles Bloom Secondary graduates spray paint Cop Hill in Lumby as a the old tradition is revived Thursday, June 4. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)

Charles Bloom Secondary graduates spray paint Cop Hill in Lumby as a the old tradition is revived Thursday, June 4. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)

North Okanagan grads leave their mark in 2020