By Kim Walter
Warren County High School will hold commencement exercises Thursday evening for the 199 graduates in the Class of 2013.
While it had originally been planned to take place outside, the ceremony will be held in the school's gymnasium at 6 p.m. due to a chance of thunderstorms in the area.
Teachers and administrators frantically prepared the gym Wednesday morning during the graduation practice. Students acted nonchalant and goofed off as they waited in line, but it was obvious nerves and anticipation also filled the room.
Some students also got a chance to make last-minute corrections to their name pronunciations.
Thursday evening's ceremony will be the first for the county's high schools. There, 15 distinguished honors graduates will be applauded for their ability to achieve a 4.0 or higher grade point average. Just shy of 40 graduates have a grade point average ranging from 3.5 to 3.99.
The stellar academics also are highlighted by the class receiving close to $2 million in scholarships from Lord Fairfax Community College, a number of four-year universities, regional and national organizations, and the United States military.
Several students received funds to cover all four years of undergraduate education.
The Class of 2013 will hear a welcome from class president Carleigh Dillon, and the senior poem, written by Cassidy Peregoy. In it, Cassidy describes the variety of emotions that accompany a life change, and invites her fellow classmates to "step forward" into the next phase of their lives.
The senior song, Miley Cyrus's "I'll Always Remember You," will be performed by several of the high school's students.
Before the presentation of diplomas, the winner of the Hugh D. Hite award will be named, as will the top male and female academic students. A candlelight ceremony also will be part of the commencement exercises.
Because the graduation is being held in the gym, seniors will receive six tickets each for family members. Overflow guests will be seated in the auditorium for a broadcast of the events.
Contact staff writer Kim Walter at 540-465-5137 ext. 191, or firstname.lastname@example.org