The Concord homecoming parade may have looked like business as usual. But one thing was noticeably amiss: the varsity football team.
"They had to forfeit the game tonight and the game next week against Homer, and then they'll be back playing the next week," explained Robert Bada, superintendent of Concord schools.
That's the punishment after some members of the team were caught attending a party with alcohol involved.
"In our school, if you are at a party or you have been drinking," Bada continued, "you have violated the athletic code."
The home crowd turned out regardless to catch candy at the parade and to cheer on the J.V. squad, which played tonight instead. But the mood was decidedly somber for some Concord families.
Superintendent Bada didn't know how many of the players were caught and punished, but it was enough that, without them, they wouldn't have had enough players to field a team.
"I'm disappointed the boys at the party ruined it for the boys not at the party," said Concord parent Sandra Hull. "I think that's really sad."
Most people agreed the penalty was fair and the follow-through by the district set a good example for other student athletes. But they also hope tonight's half-homecoming will send students a message.
"Your actions," said Concord resident Melany Chalker, "have an effect on other people. This would have affected the entire community if we hadn't been creative and found other events tonight to do."