MINNETONKA, Minn. (FOX 9) - Not going back to class is tough for students of all ages, but for high school seniors it hurts even more. Without spring sports and likely no prom or traditional graduation day, high school seniors are reflecting on the loss of milestone moments.
“I enjoy high school a lot, so I just like going to school and having a routine and that’s all taken away. It’s a bummer,” said Abby Lewis, a Minnetonka High School senior.
“It is definitely unfortunate, it feels like a stroke of bad luck,” said Anna Wander, a Minnetonka High School senior.
“We were expecting it, but it was still, we still had a little hope that maybe things would get better and something might change,” said Bella Buenting, a Minnetonka High School senior. “And then finding that out was really hard.”
Buenting, Lewis and Wander are members of the school’s outdoor track team. Their last season as high school student athletes is now lost in the fight to stop the spread of a global pandemic.
On Friday, Governor Tim Walz made it clear once again his heart breaks for them and the thousands of other seniors across Minnesota.
“I know there’s been a lot of tears shed over this, I’ve heard stories of athletes sitting out on softball diamonds, thinking about what could have been, so please accept my deepest, my deepest thoughts for all of you on this,” said Walz.
While the young women are hurt in the moment for track meets lost and those final weeks in school with lifelong friends, they still don’t know what the fall looks like as all three are planning to attend college out of state.
“It seems like moving into dorms, at least right now is kind of stretch,” said Lewis. “I hope it gets better. At least over the summer, hope to see friends often. That’s what matters most.”
As for prom, that hasn’t officially been wiped off the books at Minnetonka High School. In fact, two of the girls have already bought dresses. They said if it does get canceled, they do have some plans for that formal wear.
“Maybe this summer, we’ll be able to get together - just me and my friends - we can dress up for fun and take some pictures,” said Buenting.
In addition to prom, Minnetonka High is also prepared to slide graduation, as the senior class has made it clear they still want to try to hold a ceremony. Potential backup dates are on the books for July and August, in case crowd restrictions are eased by then.
The seniors say they’re just trying to keep smiling through it all and focus on the idea that their 2020 class will go down in history.
“I do think this will eventually kind of be something we bond over and look back on,” said Wander.