28th annual Purple and Gold Festival pumps up Hononegah spirit for new school season


Hononegah High School's marching band played during the 2022 Purple and Gold Festival on Friday evening, Aug. 19.

Hononegah Community High School saw waves of purple and gold at the 2022 “Purple and Gold Festival” on Friday evening, Aug. 19, 2022. This year marked the 28th of the event.

Prior to a parade of fall athletes entering Kelsey Field, students played a series of games: volleyball inside the field house and all levels of soccer outside on Kelsey Field.

Superintendent Mike Dugan gave a warm welcome. “Hononegah is celebrating its 100th birthday during this year's Homecoming," Dugan said.

Dugan drew attention to a brand new scoreboard. “This scoreboard was a gift from the class of 2022. They were unable to have a prom and they donated the money to purchase it.”

“We have a lot of fun things planned for a huge Homecoming celebration... In October we will have an official dedication to the Hononegah statue,” Dugan said.

HCHS board of education president Dave Kurlinkus opened by saying, “Welcome back home, the home of the Indians. This is the best place with the home of the best student section... We have new tennis courts and have made all kinds of improvements to the field." He spoke of activities that have been taking place in the field house.

“Everyone here makes Hononegah great. Hononegah is the best high school in the state of Illinois," Kurlinkus added. “Thank you to friends and family. The Hononegah board of education adores you. We would be nowhere without you.”

Principal Chad Dougherty thanked parents and students for being at the event, giving special recognition to all of the fall athletes, students and a supportive staff. Dougherty introduced board of education members, administration, staff and new teachers.

First to be introduced was the Board of Education: president Dave Kurlinkus, vice-president Mary Lewis, and members Eric Flohr, Bob Geddeis, Jim Minard, and Evan Schoepski.

In addition to Dougherty and Dugan, the other Hononegah administrators were introduced: Kathy Eckmann, assistant principal; Kendra Asbury, director of human services; David Berg, director of buildings and grounds; Justin Krueger, finance director;  Nicole Nelson, dean of students; Cara Pirrie, assistant principal of student services;  Steve Cofoid, athletic director; Maria Small, director of food services; and administrators Andrea Linder and David Lombardo.

New administration staff members are Andrew Walters, assistant athletic director, and Andrew Piske, director of technology. New English teachers include Carleen Maki, Kasey Nguyen, Christian Frieden, Josh Martin, and Rebecca Brauns. Christine Regan, Gary Zimmerman and Dan Palmiter have joined the mathematics teaching team. Mason Cheney will take on physical education. Amy Dalke, Michael Weeden, Siobhan Gilligan and Kelly Langhoff comprise a new team of science teachers. Tom Schmidt was welcomed to the Special Education department. Caridad Salinas is a full time substitute.

Dougherty pumped up the excitement by leading parents and students in a challenge. The parent's side was challenged to yell the word, “purple” as loudly as they could, while students yelled out the word “gold.” The volume rose on both sides with each turn that was taken.

Voices came together in a chant followed Doughterty's lead. Dougherty said, “We Are” with the crowd responding, “Hononegah.”

The school song played as Princess Hononegah Gabbie Murphy performed her first routine of the school year.

Before the band played our national anthem, all of who are serving our country or have served our country were asked to stand to be recognized. Loud applause filled the fields and the stands.

All stood with hands over hearts as student Olivia Gardner sang a bone-chilling version of the Star Spangled Banner.

Freshman, sophomore and junior varsity cheerleaders performed high energy routines, some mixing tumbling, dance, jumps, and stunting. Catchy, fun dance routines came to life with the talents of JV and varsity dance teams and the Indianettes. Different levels of difficulty captured strong attention for each high energy routine.

Originally football scrimmages were planned but incoming thunder and rain canceled that portion of Purple and Gold Fest.

Special memories were made as HCHS pumped up the excitement for a brand new school year!

The Indianette's varsity dance team performed a high energy routine.

Hononegah High School's marching band played during the 2022 Purple and Gold Festival on Friday evening, Aug. 19.

HCHS's student section displayed loads of spirit!

Princess Hononegah Gabbie Murphy performed her first routine of the year.

Junior Varsity dancers brought the sass in a catchy, fun routine. 

A combined group of cheerleaders was joined by Princess Hononegah in a memorable routine full of different cheer elements.

HCHS's girls swim team posed for a photo on Kelsey Field.

Girls cross country and football teams proudly took part in the 2022 Purple and Gold Festival.

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