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Return to Tradition

Editorial by Allie Reardon


 Traditions, everyone has them. Old, new, family, individual, or even school-- everyone has things they do annually. Whether it’s holiday traditions or just something like passing down a family heirloom or pulling a senior prank. Unfortunately in the wake of the pandemic, many traditions have been uprooted. Thrown out of orbit, or taken out of routine. Like I’ve said before, many things were canceled, rescheduled, or switched to a different format to facilitate safety through trying times. Slowly but surely, however, things are clicking back into place.

 I can vividly remember when I was little, the Soundwaves and Madrigals came to perform at my elementary school. The performance is a core memory of mine, and it’s a large part of the reason I’m in chorus today. Since becoming a part of these performance groups, I have learned that the performance I had seen that day was not out of the norm and was actually a tradition the choir had. A tradition that I got to be a part of. A Christmas trip to different elementary schools around the county. Dressing up in our colorful costumes and performing for the kids. Both to get them in the Christmas spirit and to do the same thing they had done for me-- convince them to join the choir. This was my last trip seeing as it’s my senior year, and we made up for the time we lost last year. We visited six schools, one of which was my home elementary school of Payneville. A place I had not been able to perform at my freshman or sophomore year, but finally got to visit again this year as we returned to our traditions.

 Another choir tradition that we got to revisit, was performing at the MCPL. Yet again, something I had done my first two years, and something I had seen before those years, we had not been able to do it last year. But as things slowly slide back into their normal routines and traditions return Santa made his visit to the library and we showed up to provide the Christmas carols for the festivities. While things in the library had certainly changed, what with the amazing renovations and all, we still performed for all those little kids there to see Santa. We got to do the Rudolph sing-a-long (something else I remember from the performance I saw in elementary school all those years ago) And in general, we had an amazing time performing at a familiar venue outside of school!

 One more returning tradition that I wanted to touch on is KYA. Finally, something un-choir-related! For those who don’t know KYA stands for Kentucky Youth Assembly and it’s a conference run through the Kentucky YMCA. It’s an assembly of students from all over the commonwealth who gather to debate and discuss each legislation. I like to describe it as mock government, it’s the state congressional process but run by students and it is one of my favorite things ever. A tradition of mine from seventh grade. I try to go to KYA or at least involve myself in preparation for the conference as much as possible. Last year though, the conference had switched to online, and due to our delegation’s low numbers, we had to back out. Meaning we didn’t attend.

 However, that was not the case this year! This year I got to experience my senior KYA, and I could not be happier with the results of the conference. The debate was fulfilling the discussions uplifting and the KYA Fun Time was surprisingly enjoyable despite the changes made to help with COVID regulations. KYA is the place that helped me find my voice, it holds a special place in my heart and I am so. So fortunate I got to return to this tradition for my final year of high school.

 Traditions are special things that we keep close to our hearts and in times like these, we shouldn’t abandon those things that make our lives all the more special. Whether your tradition was, changed, postponed, or canceled-- I hope you find a way to participate in it this year. So head out and see those lights, get that special food you always get or take that special trip you always do. But most importantly, remember to stay safe, and have a happy holiday!