Project Graduation provides safe space for student celebration

Meredith Comas, Staff Writer

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Kari Humes, Manhattan High School’s Drug and Alcohol Prevention Coordinator, has aimed to provide a safe party atmosphere for graduating students by planning this year’s annual giant, safe and regulated after-party for new MHS graduates, also known as Project Graduation.  

“The idea really is to offer a fun, safe, free night … a place for them to go and hang out one last time,” Humes said.

On graduation night, Sunday, the new MHS graduates will be allowed access to the Kansas State University’s Recreation Complex from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. for the party. According to Humes, students attending the event are supposed be at the Rec Complex with a form of I.D. no later than 10:30 p.m., dressed causally. Students should also know that no outside guests are allowed.

Attendees will be met with a fun-filled night of a wide range of activities such as racquetball, an inflatable bungee run, basketball and more. However, according to Humes these are not the main events. But rather, the star of the show is the Rec’s Climbing Center.

The Climbing Center features a number of activities for those who enjoy the thrill of a good climb. Students who sign a waiver are given permission to use the Rec’s 40-foot-tall rock wall. According to K-State’s website, the wall features 11 top ropes and a 12-feet standing boulder. Students who wish to use the Climbing Center must provide I.D. to check out equipment.

“Age 18 or over, they can sign a waiver for the rock wall themselves,” Humes said. “If they’re under 18, they need to have a parent sign it. And I’ve sent out the waiver form to parents already through email so students need to make sure to do that.”

Along with a night of music and food, there will be prizes given throughout the night, until every attendee has received a prize. The biggest prize, a $500 cash prize, will be awarded through a raffle at 1 a.m. Graduates will also receive a T-shirt with the names of the graduating class on it.

Overall, graduates attending the party will be welcomed to their newfound freedom with music, food and plenty of activities, rather than making potentially risky and damaging decisions on graduation night.  

“It’s a lot of fun and I hope a lot of students go,” Humes said.

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