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More than a game..

by Joe Donlon

Bio | Email | Follow: @pdxpeacock

Posted on October 10, 2008 at 4:01 PM

Updated Wednesday, Nov 4 at 2:32 PM

There's a big football game tonight, at Lakeridge High School. Not so much the game itself, but where it's being played - and the party that will surround it.

Lakeridge hasn't hosted a HOME football game -- at their own school field -- in nearly 40 years. The reason? Neighbor complaints about noise, lights, and traffic/parking issues. This dispute has forced the team to play its 'home' games at District Stadium, which is at Lake Oswego High School. Safe to say, playing on your main rival's field - isn't exactly an advantage.

But that all changes tonight - at least for one night. After an enormous community effort to change the policy, Lakeridge got a chance to play a home game -- at home. Lakeridge will play McNary - at Lakeridge High School, and it should be quite a sight. The school hosted a parade through town this afternoon. There is a huge tailgate party. The Junior High that feeds the school is hosting a picnic and party -- bussing any and all comers up to the High School for the game. The District is even running the regular MORNING school bus route -- at night -- to ferry students, parents, or anyone else who wants to be part of this event.

It's been a difficult football season for Lakeridge - in many ways. The school barely had enough players, and at one point this summer - there was talk of actually NOT fielding a team this year. They have yet to win a game, and in fact - have been on the short end of some lopsided results. But whatever happens tonight, it will be a night this community will remember for a long time.

Sure, it's just a football game. But in this case, it goes much deeper. It's a reflection of the important role schools play - in bringing a community together.

It's Homecoming night. And for Lakeridge - tonight - they mean that literally.

Have a great weekend.

Joe Donlon