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Hamilton Schools’ Big Blue supporters make big noise to honor seniors

Hamilton Schools 9th grader Steven Colwell lifted his horn and joined hundreds of other school band members Friday who stepped in front of their homes at noon and played the Hamilton High School “Big Blue Chant” fight song to honor graduating seniors. In another city community, Hamilton junior Ezra Simmons played the song on his flute for his family and neighbors. PROVIDED
Hamilton Schools 9th grader Steven Colwell lifted his horn and joined hundreds of other school band members Friday who stepped in front of their homes at noon and played the Hamilton High School “Big Blue Chant” fight song to honor graduating seniors. In another city community, Hamilton junior Ezra Simmons played the song on his flute for his family and neighbors. PROVIDED

Hamilton’s “Big Blue” school community made some big noise Friday as school students and supporters simultaneously played musical instruments and sang in a noon-time event across the city.

Leading the way were band members and directors of Hamilton High School’s marching band and other school musical programs, as they stepped out of their homes and began playing the Hamilton’s Big Blue fight song.

Dubbed the “Big Blue Blast,” it was a short, blaring symphony of support for soon-to-graduate seniors across the 10,000-student school system.

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School district officials promoted it as a uniquely public way of honoring the hundreds of seniors who have been denied a normal last portion of their school year by novel coronavirus (COVID-19) shutdowns of schools.

Hamilton junior Ezra Simmons played the “Big Blue Chant” with his flute in front of his house on Eaton Avenue for his neighbors, Dennis and Patty Mays, and parents, Valerie and John Simmons.

“I think this is a great way to give our seniors a good good-bye and to share school spirit,” said Simmons.

Across Butler and southern Warren County, school officials are trying nontraditional events, programs and public-but-social-distancing activities designed to bolster the morale of high school seniors who due to the coronavirus have missed out on traditional end of the year proms, senior celebration days, sports and academic award banquets.

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That was the motivation behind the idea, said Joni Copas, spokeswoman for the Butler County city school system.

“This Big Blue Blast is a celebratory tribute to our Hamilton High School seniors during this unusual and unprecedented time. We commend the band and orchestra students who wanted to salute them as they wind up their senior year,” said Copas.

On Revere Drive in Hamilton, 9th grade marching band member Steven Colwell stepped outside with his horn as the clock struck noon and played for his family, including his grandparents who enjoyed the performance at a safe, social distance.

“This idea is very neat and I think it’s good for the seniors,” said Colwell afterward.

“It means a lot to me because the seniors this year helped me out a lot … just being good role models,” he said.

“I’d rather be in the classroom, so this is something good to do,” said Colwell.