Homecoming has special meaning if it happens to be in Plymouth

by Alex Gravatt
For The Review

I spent 15 years of my 18-year-long life in Plymouth. While living here, I helped plant New Life Community Church, performed in 15 plays in the high school, performed in countless Comedy Sportz comic improv shows with the Jolly Pranksters, participated in two years of Momentum show choir, played soccer for 12 years, made lifelong friends, and took advantage of many of Plymouth High School’s incredible opportunities.

I graduated with the class of 2016 and headed to college at Ball State University excited for the new adventure. There are just under 22,000 people at Ball State, and only one other student from Plymouth there. Initially, I was shocked by the crazy number of people there, but after a few days of settling in, it became my new norm.

I quickly got used to walking past thousands of people every day not knowing any of them, eating lunch with complete strangers whose faces were glued to their phones, and the overall “mind your own business” attitude.

After my first round of midterms, my fellow Plymouthian and I packed up his car in the 88-degree heat and began our trip back home. We spent the majority of the trip making jokes about the unbearable drive through the unglamorous flatlands of Indiana, and after the six-and-a-half-hour drive, we were refreshed to get out of the car to 51 degrees and piles of leaves scattered about the ground.

We arrived home on Friday, October 9, homecoming night. After unpacking, we picked up two friends who were also in town to go look for some of the notorious toiletry terrorism that homecoming Friday always brings.

Unfortunately, I missed most of the homecoming events, but my mom filled me in on how incredible the week had been. Electing Trenton Vander Sande Homecoming King and the outpouring of support from the community for Jeff Petrie, made me truly proud to be a Panther.

The next day, two friends of mine and I helped move the last of my family’s stuff from the old house to our new place in the country. After packing up the truck, we headed out into the country, and I realized how much I missed the landscape of Plymouth.

Headed west on County Rd Z reminded me why I love driving. The hills covered in trees whose leaves are changing is so beautiful. I love it in Indiana, but it’s got nothing on that.

After working in the morning, I set out on an adventure to see old friends, and I was caught off guard by the amount of kindness that I encountered. On Sunday, in church, I was personally greeted by the host when she opened the service, then after it was over, everyone seemed to be dying to speak with me and ask how my college life was going.

On Monday, I went to support some of my best friends as they beat Ripon in soccer. While sitting on the sidelines, I had a literal line of people talking to me. I haven’t felt so popular in my life.

Though I’ve always been very thankful to be from Plymouth, knowing the opportunities it offers and how beautiful it is, being away for a few months and coming back really reminded me how awesome a place it is.

I know, no matter where I go in life, I can always come back and find a second home in one of the neatest places on earth, Plymouth, Wisconsin.


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