The Port Clinton High School Class of 2020 may or may not finally be able to walk down the aisle to get their diplomas this year, but the students did enjoy an afternoon of adulation from all around town.
The students decorated their vehicles, lined up at Port Clinton High School, and received a hero’s sendoff thanks to a citywide parade that included an escort by the Port Clinton Police Department and the fire and rescue vehicles from Port Clinton and the townships of Catawba, Bay and Erie, as well as the Ohio Highway Patrol.
It satisfied the Ohio mandates for social distancing and crowds, caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
With so many parts of Ohio society reopening each week, Superintendent Patrick Adkins, the students and their parents are keeping their fingers crossed that the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) might now allow a commencement ceremony to take place on Saturday, June 27.
Lt. Gov. Jon Husted announced Ohio will allow wedding ceremonies to include as many as 300 people starting this week, the latest in a series of steps by Gov. Mike DeWine’s administration to roll back social-distancing rules set up weeks ago to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
Husted said catering and banquet centers will be allowed to reopen under the same rules as restaurants and bars. That includes six-foot distancing between tables and no congregating.
“We recognize that there are a lot of weddings and events that are important to people’s lives that can and should go on,” Husted said. “We are just asking that it be done as safely as possible to avoid the spread of the virus.”
Ohio will continue to limit gatherings of more than 10 people. But it has ruled that at restaurants and bars, up to 300 people can attend a wedding reception so long as they remain in small groups socially distanced from one another.
Large mass gatherings of any kind have been banned in Ohio since mid-March due to fears that such events would create outbreaks of coronavirus.