Ending Senior Year With a Bash


Michael Galang

Universal’s Hogwarts castle is lit up for grad bash as the celebration is just beginning. Universal kept the Hogwarts castle lit up throughout the night and eventually they put on a firework show as a last moment of the senior’s grad bash. Photo courtesy of Michael Galang.

            As the end of the school year begins creeping up, the seniors of Steinbrenner High School start to celebrate their upcoming graduation. Friday, April 21st, over 300 Steinbrenner seniors took charter buses and headed to Universal Orlando for their grad bash celebration. The students left the school around 5:30pm and arrived at the theme park around 7:40pm. Universal closes their park early to prep for the multiple schools that will be showing up and then around 7pm they opened the park for just the students. The drive there consisted of 3 long hours for the students, and they needed to find ways of entertainment.  

        “Me and my friend played music, a lot of Taylor Swift and we made funny faces at kids in the window whenever another bus from our school drove next to us”, said senior Emma Barger.   

        Upon their arrival, the students scanned their tickets and then were able to go to the rides, shops, and walk around with their friends. The lines for the rides became lengthy with the amount of people in the park at the same time. Some areas near Gringotts Bank Ride and Harry Potter world were some of the parts that weren’t as crowded.  

       “Although we weren’t able to ride many rides, spending time with friends was what made the trip,” said senior Riley Alvis.  

        The grad bash celebration to Universal has been an ongoing tradition for Steinbrenner High School for multiple years. The staff put in many days’ worth of work to ensure the best experience for the graduating class.  

       “It’s the one final big event with our class before graduation…I think we’re all going to remember it for a long time,” said Barger.  

       The staff of Universal also played their part in making this a good experience for the seniors. The employees stay past closing time for multiple weeks due to many schools hosting their grad bash there, musical bands are scheduled, the food stands are open, and even fireworks at the Hogwarts castle. However, with the extreme number of schools scheduling their trips to Universal, this causes them to pack multiple schools, each with hundreds of students, into one night.  

      “I had also heard of schools coming from states as far as Tennessee which contributed greatly to the crowding of the park,” said Alvis.  

       After the eventful night, it took around an hour or more to get back onto the charter busses which doesn’t include the heavy traffic leaving the theme park. On the trip back to Steinbrenner, many of the students had fallen asleep from their exhaustion of riding rides, socializing, and having fun. Once they arrived back to the school in the early morning hours, the seniors were able to get picked up or drive themselves back to their houses to officially end their grad bash celebration.