Darien High’s Graduation Ceremony: OUTSIDE at 5:15 PM: What You Need to Know

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Darien High School’s graduation ceremony will be held outside at 5:15 p.m. Friday, in spite of the looming clouds, school officials have announced.

UPDATE: Brenner’s Explanation

Here’s Schools Superintendent Dan Brenner’s announcement emailed to parents and students about the decision to hold graduation outside:

Dear Graduation Attendees,

We are faced with the most difficult of choices given the nature of the weather pattern we are confronted with.  We must choose between going into the auditorium with limited seating and using the gymnasium for overflow seating, which is less than optimal, or risking the rain and the somewhat unpredictability of the current forecast.

After much consultation with our meteorologist, who focuses directly on Darien, we know that:

  • Radar strongly suggests the rain should fully exit the area by 4 p.m.
  • Rain totals will be minimal with a fine mist likely to be the type of precipitation

As a result we have decided that in an attempt to be as inclusive to the families as possible we will be holding the ceremony outside on the Stadium field.

The current weather is forcing a bit of a delay in setting up technically but we would anticipate no more than a 15-minute delay in the start time.

We would ask you to dress appropriately given the conditions and if you choose to bring an umbrella to be sensitive to others sight lines where possible.

We will see you in a few hours and congratulations on the day.

What to Know If You’re Going

No tickets are needed at DHS Stadium Field, and seating is unlimited.

In addition to seating at the ceremony, there will be seats in the high school gymnasium for a simultaneous broadcast by Darien TV79. Seating is also unlimited in the gymnasium.

Gates open at 4 p.m. and seats are first-come, first-served. There will be folding chair seats on the field, as well as the entire home side bleachers. The stage is elevated so all seats on the field and bleachers have good sight lines.

There are usually no food concessions at graduation.

For Graduating Students to Remember

Seniors should arrive by 4 p.m. and report to the South Gym for robing and final preparations.

Seniors will not be allowed to carry anything with them into the ceremony. Water will be provided to each student at their seat.

Walking on the Stadium Field turf in high or spike heels can be dangerous, please choose your footwear with that in mind.

Students should refer to the ceremony agreement for graduation attire guidelines.

There is NO smoking on DHS grounds, before or after the ceremony. This includes cigars!

The ceremony will last about one hour and forty-five minutes.

A professional photographer will be at the ceremony and will make photos available for sale online a few days after graduation. See: events.lifetouch.com/darienhsdarienct

There will be a reception hosted by the DHSPA for all graduates, their families and guests in the Main Cafeteria immediately following the ceremony.

Graduation Ceremony Simulcast

Regardless of the weather, the graduation ceremony will be simulcast live in the air conditioned Main Gymnasium, where no tickets are required.

Please note this location may not be comfortable for elderly or frail family members as seating is on folding chairs or in the bleachers.

Children under 13 must be accompanied by an adult.

The ceremony will also be simulcast live through the DHS website (Student Life tab, Video on Demand) and on local Channel 78.

Traffic and Parking

Traffic and parking for graduation will be controlled by the Darien Police Department.

All traffic must enter via Noroton Avenue, as High School Lane and Nutmeg Lane will be closed.

Parking will be very tight, please budget extra time. Handicap-accessible parking will be located in the lower parking lot near the stadium field.

Let a traffic officer know if you need to park there and you will be directed accordingly.

Smoking at or After Graduation

Short version: Nope
Longer version:

Smoking is strictly prohibited on campus. Please refrain from smoking on campus at or after the graduation ceremony. This includes cigars!

Additional campus security will be present to protect the health and well-being of all individuals in attendance. Any smoking product at or after graduation will be confiscated.