Published May 26, 2021


LYNNFIELD — Pioneer Pride was on full display during Lynnfield High School’s second annual Parade of Destinations on Saturday, May 22.
The high school launched the parade last year to serve as an alternative to the traditional Senior Week events that were canceled after schools across the state were closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In the wake of last year’s Parade of Destinations being a huge hit with students, families and the community at-large, Lynnfield High officials decided to make the parade a new tradition.

SENIOR Dylan Marano waves a University of South Carolina flag during Lynnfield High School’s second annual Parade of Destinations on May 22. (Dan Tomasello Photo)

“It was great and a lot of fun,” said LHS Principal Bob Cleary. “The kids were really excited about it, which is great. I was really excited about the turnout of the crowd. There were people standing around in different pockets around the route, which was really nice to see. It was great seeing former graduates cheering the seniors on. It was great seeing everyone.”
High School Assistant Principal Brian Bates agreed.
“It was a great community event,” said Bates. “This is our second year doing it and it’s becoming a tradition for the senior class to participate in. It was great bringing the community together to celebrate the accomplishments of the senior class.”
Similar to last year’s parade, the Class of 2021 rode in cars that were covered with signs and decorations of the colleges they will be attending. The schools that were highlighted included Duke University, Endicott College, Fordham University, Northeastern University, Merrimack College, Providence College, Salem State University, the University of South Carolina and the University of Tampa.
“We have kids going to really good colleges every year,” said Bates.
Senior Jack Ross, who is attending Endicott College next fall, said it was “really cool seeing everyone’s cars decorated.”
“This parade is really special,” said Ross.
Senior Elizabeth Daly, who is waiting to see if she has been accepted into the University of Edinburgh in Scotland, agreed with Ross’ viewpoint.
“It was great seeing everyone in the community and showing the town where everyone in our class is going next year,” said Daly.
The route for the Class of 2021’s Parade of Destination had seniors turn right onto Essex Street, right onto Pillings Pond, left onto Wildewood Drive, right onto Archer Lane, right onto Summer Street, left onto Main Street, right onto Chestnut Street, right onto Lowell Street, right onto Main Street and left onto Essex Street. The Town Common was also covered with signs recognizing the Class of 2021.
“It was really fun,” said senior Maddie Mahan, who is headed to UMass-Amherst next year. “Most of us didn’t expect to have any major celebrations. It was really fun being able to come together as a class and show everyone where we are going.”
Senior Dylan Pool took a break from starring as Billy Crocker in LHS’ production of the musical “Anything Goes” in order to embark on the Parade of Destinations.
“It was a lot of fun seeing everyone,” said Pool, who is headed to the University of Connecticut this fall. “It was cool seeing everyone dressed up and their cars decorated. It was a lot of fun.”
Senior Kimberly Daniels, who portrayed Hope Harcourt in “Anything Goes,” said participating in the Parade of Destinations was “amazing.”
“I didn’t think it would come to this point because of COVID,” said Daniels, who is going to Worcester Polytechnic Institute next year. “It was a lot of fun. I really enjoyed it.”
Retiring LHS math teacher and cross-country head coach Joe DiBiase served as the parade’s grand marshal. He rode in his oldest son Pete’s 1991 BMW convertible during the parade.
“It was a privilege to serve as the grand marshal of the Parade of Destinations,” said DiBiase. “I give these seniors so much credit and respect for making it through the year with grace, humor and hard work. Driving through town with my son, who is a senior at North Andover High School, in our old BMW was a blast.”
Cleary was thrilled DiBiase was honored during one last Lynnfield Lap with the Class of 2021.
“It was great having an icon in the building lead the way,” said Cleary. “It was a great day for the seniors and Joe to get recognized by the community. It was a really nice treat.”
Cleary said the Class of 2021 has shown a tremendous amount of resiliency during an incredibly difficult year. He said going from remote learning to hybrid learning to full in-person learning was a challenge.
“The kids have been outstanding,” said Cleary. “The changes this year made it super difficult, and our kids did what they do all the time. They took it in stride and worked really hard. It was great to see.”
Bates said the Class of 2021 has been “very gracious” this year.
“There could have been a lot of complaining, and there wasn’t,” said Bates. “They stuck together as a class and spoke up when they wanted their voices to be heard. But they never complained. We always stress kindness in this district, and they were just really kind.”
Daly acknowledged that senior year has been “really hectic” for the Class of 2021.
“It’s great getting to this point,” said Daly. “Looking back on this year, we all decided to make the best of it. And now that this year is coming to a close, it is what we expected for our senior year.”
Pool agreed.
“It is really refreshing because the beginning of the year was so tough,” said Pool. “It’s really nice that we can all come together as a community.”
Ross concurred with Daly and Pool’s sentiment.
“As things start to open up and start going back to normal, it is really rewarding to see all of our hard work pay off,” said Ross. “Remote learning and hybrid learning was a challenge at times, but I am proud that everyone got through it.”
Cleary thanked the community for supporting the Class of 2021, particularly this year.
“The community’s support every year is just tremendous,” said Cleary. “I think one of the things that makes us a good district is we have a community that always supports us. Parents did whatever they could to make this a great celebration. There are parents who don’t have a senior who jumped in and helped out. It allowed us to celebrate these students as we should.”