GUILFORD — As a prop plane flew overhead with a large banner reading “Congratulations G.H.S. Class of 2020,” a car parade of graduates made the 4-mile trek from the Guilford High School to the Guilford Fairgrounds for graduation.

Graduates waved and cheered from vehicles decorated with posters and green and white balloons, as the procession slowing wove through town.

The traditional graduation on the Guilford Green was switched to a car parade and conferring the diplomas at the fairgrounds, Wednesday, June 17, to abide by social distancing in the time of COVID-19.

As Pomp and Circumstance filled the air, cars parked in their assigned spots and graduates and families milled around until Principal Richard Misenti took to the stage to address the crowd.

“I’ll tell you; I wish I thought of a parade earlier,” he said, outfitted with a mask. “That was really neat going through that town and seeing everyone come out and support us.”

The warm spring night filled with the sounds of car horns as the speeches progressed and the 277 graduates, all practicing social distancing, walked across the stage and received their diplomas.

“The parade was a wonderful idea,” said Rose Ciardiello. “It was great to see the community come out to support our kids.

“It really meant a lot to have them out there, supporting us as we drove by,” said the mother of graduate Kevin Ciadiello. “It definitely exceeded our expectations.”

Connecticut Media Group