El Sereno - You put all that time in school, and you don’t even get a graduation ceremony this year.
But you do get a parade.
The neighborhood of El Sereno celebrated the Class of 2020 on Friday with a Community Drive-by Parade. About 60 vehicles traveled a loop in procession, from 10:15 a.m. to noon.
The parade featured Hollenbeck Community Police cars, Fire Station #16 vehicles, a flatbed truck carrying a DJ and sound system, mini trucks with custom paint jobs, the Silent Natives Motorcycle Club, and an eight-foot-tall graduate piñata wearing a cap and gown Even some of the graduates themselves were in trucks and cars - though most just watched along the parade route.
The parade drove past schools throughout the neighborhood - including elementary schools, Catholic schools, a middle school and Wilson High School.
“The students had had many challenges to being able to actually make it to graduation,” said Genny Guerrero from the El Sereno Bicentennial Committee, which organized the event. "They turned their grades around, they worked very hard and then the finish line was taken away from them. Then we have the other students that pushed through to maintain the perfect grades and perfect attendance and were looking forward to that ‘icing on the cake’ to have that right off passage.”
She added that, of course, everyone maintained social distance.
But still, “Even through the masks we could see the excitement on their faces.”