Lincoln High School’s alumni will once again descend on Indiana’s oldest city as Homecoming festivities are set to return on Friday.

Homecoming coordinator Bailey Hacker-Powell said everyone seems eager to get back after Homecoming celebrations were canceled last year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“I think people are definitely ready to have their tradition back,” she said. “A lot of classes were sad last year that they didn’t get to come together for their reunion.

“This year, we’re seeing some classes do a combo; I know the Classes of 2005 and 2006 are coming together for a kind of mega-reunion so that everybody is included. I think we’re going to have a really good turnout this year.

“This is important for our city.”

Few high schools do Homecoming quite like Lincoln, with hundreds of alumni coming back from wherever in the world they’ve built their lives to visit with old friends, share in fond memories and reconnect.

Festivities will kick off Friday with the annual parade, which has drawn nearly 70 entries, Hacker-Powell said.

Several classes celebrating milestone reunions in 2020 are coming together this year instead.

Classes spanning more than 50 years will be represented, Hacker-Powell said, with entries from the Class of 1961 all the way through the Class of 2016.

The parade will step off at 3:45 p.m. from Second and Hart streets, proceed east on Hart Street to Fifth Street where entries proceed north back to Main Street.

The parade then heads west on Main Street and finishes at Second Street at the Riverfront Pavilion, where Homecoming coordinator Dick Vermillion said as many as 25 LHS classes will be gathered to celebrate.

“A lot of classes last year had to cancel, so we’re expecting a good turnout this year,” Vermillion said.

Both Hacker-Powell and Vermillion say they will, however, be mindful of the continuing surge in COVID-19 cases locally.

Those attending the parade are encouraged to socially distance as much as possible and wear masks.

Vermillion, too, said they are looking to use every square inch of the Riverfront Pavilion as well as adjoining Busseron and First streets in an effort to allow classes to spread out.

Cutters will be hosting a cash bar, he said, and at the culmination of the parade, food trucks have been invited to line First Street to cater to the reuniting classes.

Vermillion, too, wanted to remind visitors to downtown that a popular parking site at the old grain elevators on First Street is no longer there. That area is now home to Riverview Lofts, an apartment complex, and any parking there is residential only, he said.

Coordinators will, however, have shuttles downtown to get people to and from the pavilion more easily — and safely.

“There are a lot of older folks who come to these reunions, and we want to take care of them,” Vermillion said. “Other than that, it should be business as usual.”

LHS Distinguished Alumni Linda Griffith Davis and Brig. Gen. Ronald A. Westfall will be recognized at the end of the parade at the Riverfront Pavilion.

Then the game against Castle High School then begins at Inman Field at 7:30 p.m.

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